The Prepper Journal http://www.theprepperjournal.com Prepping, Survival and Common Sense Wed, 27 May 2015 00:37:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 Know the Alternate Escape Routes from Your Neighborhoodhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/26/know-the-alternate-escape-routes-from-your-neighborhood/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/26/know-the-alternate-escape-routes-from-your-neighborhood/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 00:37:58 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14455 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Pop quiz. If you had to leave your neighborhood and the route you normally take was blocked would you have an alternate way out? What if the alternate was blocked? What if all roads out of your neighborhood were blocked by military check-points? Would you have a backup escape route or would you be trapped […]

The post Know the Alternate Escape Routes from Your Neighborhood appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Pop quiz. If you had to leave your neighborhood and the route you normally take was blocked would you have an alternate way out? What if the alternate was blocked? What if all roads out of your neighborhood were blocked by military check-points? Would you have a backup escape route or would you be trapped staring at the lights ahead wishing you had made it out sooner?

Most days when I am driving home from work my mind is on autopilot. I make the turns I normally make, engage my turn signal at the proper time and generally drive the correct speed without even looking at the gauge on my dash. I do this not because I am a robot, but because I have done this so many times the actions are ingrained into my muscle memory. I am sure it is this way for many of you who drive to work every day.

But have you ever stopped to think of your escape routes during an emergency? What if the normal paths you take aren’t available? What if you aren’t even able to take your vehicle? Does your bug out plan allow you to get creative or are you hoping for the best? For those of us who live in more rural/suburban settings, driving our vehicles everywhere is almost taken for granted. We rarely get out and explore the world outside of these paved streets but knowing what is out there could be the key to your survival if you find yourself depending on alternate route options. Knowing your area by foot could save your life in the right circumstances.

Going off-road

Knowing the roads out of your neighborhood is pretty simple and I would bet that most of us have that down already but could you go off-road if the way was blocked? Could you cut across a field or through the back of a neighbor’s yard to get out to another road? Have you ever considered that at all? In a recent post I mentioned the need for a bug out vehicle that had the capability to go off-road and this is a good example where that could be necessary. Maybe it isn’t the road out of your neighborhood, but it is a major road that you would normally take to get out-of-town and it is blocked. A line of cars stretches before you and you can see a roadblock ahead. What do you do now?

Ideally you would have considered all of this well in advance. I routinely go for walks through my neighborhood. Usually I stick to the roads, but there are also trails near where I live so me and the survival dog will check those out from time to time. I live on the outskirts of a decent sized city right in the middle of too many and too few people. A few miles in either direction puts me solidly into rural farmland or the congestion of downtown.

I know the best option is to move but I am where I am for now so my prepping so far has been looking at ways I can avoid getting stuck in a trap should something block our access out.

A creek might make vehicle traffic impossible but it is an alternate way out on foot.

A creek might make vehicle traffic impossible but it is an alternate way out on foot.

Identify any natural boundaries that could block you in

The area I live in has mild hills around. There is a pretty good-sized creek on my southern border that I would be able to cross on foot if needed, but I also know areas where the banks are low enough to allow a properly equipped 4 wheeler to cross also. Getting across the creek is one obstacle that could give me an alternate way out if all the other methods were blocked.

In addition to the creek I have property between me and all of the major roads. Some of this property is fenced, but bolt cutters would allow me to cut through any fence if needed. Once on the other side of the fence, I could follow woods through other yards to come out well down the road, potentially avoiding the road block. There are other routes that could take me through public land where radio towers are mounted, possibly down power line right-of-ways to make alternate tracks out of the area.

None of this is rocket surgery it just takes the normal plans we might make when we are preparing our families for some evacuation need and takes them a step further. Each of us can get out of our car and spend a couple of hours every month or so surveying our neighborhood. Maybe you don’t have creeks and woods to worry about; perhaps your neighborhood is alleys and blocks of large buildings. There will still be options if you are looking the right way.

When was the last time you took a closer look at your immediate surroundings? Do you know who has fences in their yard and who doesn’t? Do you know who is rarely home or who leaves their trash cans by the road for a couple of days after pick-up? Do you know the area around your neighborhood from an aerial perspective? Google Earth or even Google maps is a great way to pretend you have your own drone and you are conducting surveillance of your territory. Start in on your property and zoom or pan out to see details you might have missed driving by. This information could give you options when it looks like there are none.

The post Know the Alternate Escape Routes from Your Neighborhood appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/26/know-the-alternate-escape-routes-from-your-neighborhood/feed/ 0
Best Bug out Vehicles You Can Actually Affordhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/21/best-bug-out-vehicles-you-can-actually-afford/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/21/best-bug-out-vehicles-you-can-actually-afford/#comments Thu, 21 May 2015 14:24:04 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14412 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Is there any one of us who doesn’t drool a little whenever you see an exotic sports car tooling down the road? I don’t mean a Mustang GT either; I am talking about Ferrari, Lamborghini, McLauren – something in that range. I love these cars and if someone gave me one I would gladly take […]

The post Best Bug out Vehicles You Can Actually Afford appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Is there any one of us who doesn’t drool a little whenever you see an exotic sports car tooling down the road? I don’t mean a Mustang GT either; I am talking about Ferrari, Lamborghini, McLauren – something in that range. I love these cars and if someone gave me one I would gladly take it. Of course, after I took it out for a good spin I would sell it as quickly as I could. Why? Because I can think of so many other things I need to spend money on besides the most expensive sports car I can find.

One problem I have with a lot of the Best bug out vehicle lists is that they are full of really exotic (expensive) vehicles that the average prepper simply couldn’t afford. If we could, then I guess we would all have that Knight XV Fully Armored SUV that goes for around $800,000 if my source is right. I started thinking about this subject a little more as I was shopping for my own personal Bug Out Vehicle. After much saving, searching and research I finally found what I think is a great option for me, but I wanted to talk about bug out vehicles and create a different kind of list. This list will be the best bug out vehicles you can actually afford. So if you are in the market for a vehicle that may help you get out of or survive the next disaster, zombie apocalypse or the common summer or winter storm, read on.

What is a Bug Out Vehicle?

A bug out vehicle by definition is what you would hop in if you needed to get out of dodge. If you were going to pack your family and all your survival supplies in a vehicle and race out-of-town to avoid danger that was coming for you, the bug out vehicle would be the best option for you do accomplish this task. All bug out scenarios aren’t created equally though and each person has their own needs and preferences. Fortunately for us, there are almost as many bug out vehicle options as there are situations. The list below should account for most of what I can foresee the average person needing in a vehicle.

What should the bug out vehicle allow you to do?

Could you bug out in that 2 seat sports car? Absolutely. You someone bug out on a survival bicycle? Of course and before it’s all over that might be what you are forced to finally resort to, but in my mind a bug out vehicle has to be able to accomplish a few tasks to even make the running. Ideally we have a vehicle that you can use daily that can also hold its own if forced to be put into action to get you out of a hairy situation.

Bug Out Vehicles can start out as more traditional cars and trucks.

It must hold 4 people – But I am a single girl you say, why would I need something to hold 4 people? I believe it is short-sighted to plan on a bug out vehicle that only carries one or two people. That might be what you are forced to live with if something happened right now, but it shouldn’t be the goal. If this is a real bug out scenario you want to be with some friends or family because there is strength and support in numbers. The best bug out vehicles won’t leave the possibility of taking a few more people with you out of the equation.

It must be able to carry your supplies – Back to the 2 seat vehicle and even a lot of mid-sized cars these days. Most have so little cargo room that you would be lucky to get your bug out bag and a pillow in the trunk but you could forget about all of your prepping supplies, ammo and food and water you have stored. I am not saying that your bug out vehicle should be able to carry everything in your house or else it is worthless, but you do want the ability to pack a good portion of your supplies or gear.

It must be able to navigate rough terrain/rough weather – The first thing that comes to mind when I am considering a vehicle that I could actually use to bug out is 4 wheel drive. I have read other forums where some will complain about the fuel you would need and how a larger vehicle could actually be worse. Some have even recommended a hybrid as a better solution to save gas and I simply disagree. In almost every horrible scenario I can imagine, even something as mundane as a hurricane evacuation, the ability to go off-road is an important advantage. Try taking that Prius across the median of a clogged highway that is soaked with rain. Can you imagine that Chevy Volt in a snow storm with downed trees? Motorcycles don’t pass the test for me on this point although if outfitted correctly, they can go through a lot of rugged terrain. The downside is cargo capacity and exposure to the elements.

It must be fairly nimble and able to negotiate obstacles quickly – Back to motorcycles again. They are perhaps the most nimble but they have their drawbacks. Also, a trailer on the back of your vehicle would give you the ability to carry a lot of gear but seriously reduce your mobility. Try backing up a trailer and turning around to avoid an ambush quickly. Most people have problems backing up a trailer when they aren’t panicked, getting shot at or worse. You could wait for Ford’s Pro Trailer Backup Assist coming in their 2016 line, but is it worth it?

What are the best bug out vehicles?

So taking all of those criteria into consideration and this assumes the market is the US, what are the best bug out vehicles that meet that criteria and won’t break the bank? Most all of these are vehicles that unlike the Knight XV are driven by millions every day and can get you to safety, all things being equal. You can also buy late-model versions of each of these for less than $20,000. Not free obviously, but not $800,000 either.

Jeep – There are several models of Jeep that boast both 4 wheel drive and have a decent amount of cargo capacity to get you where you need to go. For serious off-road enthusiasts there is a huge market of parts and accessories to make this vehicle highly customizable.

Jeep's are tried and tested off road vehicles that could make excellent bug out vehicles.

Jeep’s are tried and tested off road vehicles that could make excellent bug out vehicles.

Humvee – The average prepper knows all about these vehicles and new ones are out of the realm of possibility, but you can get surplus military Humvee right now for less than $10,000 on the GOV Planet website. If you have always dreamed of outfitting your own mini-fiefdom after the world ends, now is your chance. Of course if you just want a great vehicle that can get you and your family to your secluded retreat, this makes a compelling option at this price.

A surplus Hummer could be an incredible savings and give you a battle tested winner.

A surplus Hummer could be an incredible savings and give you a battle tested winner.

4 Wheel drive Truck with crew cab – There are too many four-wheel drive trucks to list here, but a crew cab make this a natural fit for a Bug out vehicle. You can improve the suspension, add a cargo top and have a great vehicle that you can drive every day or when the grid goes down.

Trucks are one of the most common bug out vehicles for their capacity and off-road ability.

Trucks are one of the most common bug out vehicles for their capacity and off-road ability.

4 Wheel or all wheel drive SUV – Just like with trucks, SUV’s are everywhere but they aren’t all created equally. Some have 4 wheel drive, but all 4 wheel capability isn’t created equally. For SUV’s I would stick with Toyota 4Runner, Nissan or the Jeeps mentioned above. Obviously, the old Ford Expeditions and Chevy Tahoe can work in this capacity too and there will always be easy access to parts for each.

The family SUV can also get you out of a jam with the right upgrades.

The family SUV can also get you out of a jam with the right upgrades.

Best Bug out vehicle upgrades

These vehicles listed above will make great, affordable bug out vehicle options for most people but if you want to extend their capabilities, you can add some fairly simple aftermarket additions to make them even better.

  • Roof top cargo racks – This will extend the amount of gear you can carry by a considerable bit. Two well-known manufacturers are Gobi and Baha.
  • Improved front and rear bumpers – This is not an upgrade for everyone because they aren’t cheap but if you want some more protection (a lot more) for your bug out vehicle, there are several manufacturers. ARB, Shrockworks and CBI make insanely tough bumpers that you can add to your own vehicle.
  • Winch kits – Sometimes you get stuck and if the end of the world as we know it happens and you are riding into the wilderness in your bug out vehicle, you won’t be able to call AAA. Having a sturdy winch could pull you out of a jam.
  • Enhanced lighting – Regular headlights are only meant to show the road immediately ahead of you at a normal distance that won’t blind traffic coming towards you. If you are out in the wilderness or a power outage or storm has rendered your world as black as night, additional lights can help you see or be seen. The current LED technology has really increased the amount of available light you can have for your BOV. Some of these lights are capable of putting out over 24,000 lumens! For comparison, your regular Cree mini flashlight has about 200 lumens. Rigid Industries is probably the best known (and most expensive) but there are cheaper options out there if you look around. For instance, Amazon has a 24 inch LED light bar for under $60. That will save you about $800.
  • Communication optionsCB Radio and Ham Radio make excellent upgrades to your bug out vehicle. Either will allow you to communicate with the rest of your group or rescue sources nearby.
  • Additional fuel storage tanks – Increase the range of your bug out vehicle by adding a larger or secondary fuel tank. Of course, there are cheaper options where you can just purchase additional fuel cans and mount them on your roof rack or bumper.

Hopefully, this gives you some ideas if you are looking for a bug out vehicle that you can afford. What are you driving?

The post Best Bug out Vehicles You Can Actually Afford appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/21/best-bug-out-vehicles-you-can-actually-afford/feed/ 44
What Would a WROL World Look Like?http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/18/what-would-a-wrol-world-look-like/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/18/what-would-a-wrol-world-look-like/#comments Tue, 19 May 2015 00:04:58 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14394 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

What are you prepping for? Is it a natural disaster like a wildfire, tornado or hurricane? Those are perfect examples of common events that occur every day. Nature has a way of dealing us unexpected circumstances from time to time and we, as humans try to roll with the situation as best we can. That […]

The post What Would a WROL World Look Like? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

What are you prepping for? Is it a natural disaster like a wildfire, tornado or hurricane? Those are perfect examples of common events that occur every day. Nature has a way of dealing us unexpected circumstances from time to time and we, as humans try to roll with the situation as best we can. That is one of the benefits of prepping in that you are proactively planning for events, and the fallout of events now before you find yourself possibly affected by disaster. There are large and small examples of emergencies but prepping gives you a method of working through examples and making potentially lifesaving decisions all from the comfort of your computer or as in Sideliner’s case; the easy chair.

From a big-picture perspective we can look at regions where certain types of natural disasters are more common. If you live in areas where you have identified many potential risks as part of your prepping plan, some people advocate designing your own threat matrix. A threat matrix is really just a decision-making system where you assign a level of risk and probability to each disaster. This is supposed to help you decide which disaster is more likely or impactful to your life and thus should be worked on first. For example, California has routinely seen floods, earthquakes, mudslides, wildfires and you have to throw in the risk of blackouts, riots, nuclear fallout and most recently drought. You could line all of these threats up on a page, assign them a number and a risk and start making plans accordingly. Now that I think of it, why would anyone want to live in California anyway?

As a resident of California this might make sense because you have seen the first-hand effects of these disasters, but what if there was a different type of emergency that we haven’t really seen in this country before? What preparations would you make if you knew now that the FEMA tents weren’t going to be popping up, truckloads of relief supplies weren’t headed your way and that sooner or later scores of news media and Red Cross volunteers weren’t going to be descending on your town to document the devastation?

What would a WROL world look like?

WROL is a term that means Without Rule of Law. I don’t know who coined it first but it seems to accurately describe the worst type of scenario preppers imagine. A WROL world could spring up spontaneously or it could grow out of some relatively common natural disaster. To imagine a WROL world you would simply have to imagine no police, fire or ambulances coming to your aid. In a WROL world you would be on your own or left with your band of friends and neighbors to provide for yourself all of the services that are now gone.

We have seen brief glimpses of WROL already. What if it is not ever controlled?

We have seen brief glimpses of WROL already. What if it is not ever controlled?

If you look around you might have seen glimpses of a WROL world even if they are quickly controlled. Looting is an example of WROL behavior and so are riots. The two go hand in hand but the police rely on controlling the crowd to a large extent to keep these events from growing much larger than they are. If the police are not available or are overwhelmed, what happens then? When the rioters and looters don’t have any reason to stop the spread of rage and violence, what do they move on to next?

Imagine something as benign as the power grid failing for some arbitrary period. Let’s say a fluke takes out the power for the entire eastern seaboard for one month. This could be a terrorist caused outage, solar flare or some random chain of events that causes a domino effect of failures to equipment and systems. Imagine also that this happens in August and the east coast is also experiencing warmer than usual weather.

Without power, what could possibly happen in the US? Do you think riots would break out? Could you see looting of stores? Without power there would be no way to refrigerate food. You wouldn’t be able to pump gas, run credit card machines or ATM’s, air conditioners or ice makers. Cell towers would be ineffective. Would you be able to go to work? Not likely unless your job involved something manual that was completely not reliant on electricity or fuel. My job is 100% dependent on the internet and electricity. Public transportation would be down and even government services would be unable to help. So what would millions of hot, hungry and panicked people do?

What would you have to worry about in a WROL world?

Is this all a fairytale? Maybe. There are a lot of people who believe nothing bad like this will ever happen and that our way of life will keep on chugging along in more or less the same fashion it always has. I have said many times that I hope that is our shared reality, but I am planning for the chance that it doesn’t. My own threat matrix is my gut. You will find no shortage of people who say worrying about things like this is a waste of effort.

By very definition WROL means there is law and order so normalcy is pretty much out the window. With a failure like this there wouldn’t be enough police, National Guard or military combined to help everyone out. All of these soldiers, police and firemen would have their own families to watch over most likely and I could see many of them, if forced to choose between going to work stopping a riot or staying at home to defend their wife and kids would choose the latter. Again, there will be those who disagree and say that the professional soldier, police officer or fireman would never abandon their post and communities will rally together to take care of one another in times of crisis. Maybe when the crisis is over, but not while everyone is going through it.

In the Ferguson riots, two shops were ignored by the looters. Can you guess why?

In the Ferguson riots, two shops were ignored by the looters. Can you guess why?

What can you do now to prepare for WROL?

My WROL scenario above is relatively short-lived. There have certainly been natural disasters where the destruction caused power outages for a long time. In my example, presumably we would have half a country that could rally to help us but assume for a second help isn’t on the way. You are on your own for a month of potential lawlessness. Imagine a month of the Purge lived out in real life?

Limit your exposure

Who makes the best target? They guy right in front of you. If there is widespread violence being carried out in the name of rage or of need, stay far away from it. You don’t want to be anywhere near the chaos that is going on and it would be better to let it burn out as much as possible before it gets to you. In this case bugging out may be your best option so have a plan for that contingency in your back pocket. In my scenario you would have plenty of time to make that decision, but you should have prepping supplies together before the ability to acquire them has passed. This includes everything you need for food, water, shelter, security and hygiene for a minimum of 6 months. Start small if you have to.

Use the buddy system

If you do have to travel or bug out, you don’t want to go it alone. Someone needs to be there to watch your six and potentially pull you out of trouble. In a without rule of law world, I foresee deadly force as being much more prevalent and warranted if your life is in danger. I am not saying to go out and shoot people walking down your street, but if they are threatening your life then you have a choice to make. It is better to consider this now as opposed to in the moment even though I realize and admit that thinking about killing someone is a lot different from actually pulling the trigger.

Keep an eye out

If there is a real threat of violence in your neighborhood, you won’t be able to simply lock the door and hope they will go away. If you haven’t already, post-event you should form up with your neighbors immediately to draw up plans for security and address any needs of anyone in your local group. Whatever you did or didn’t do before the event will need to go out the window if you want to survive. It takes more than one person to stand guard all night.

Arm yourself responsibly

And legally. I am a big advocate of responsible firearm ownership. This assumes you have the training and knowledge of how and when you should discharge that firearm in the course of defending your life. It has been said that the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun and I believe that. Just make sure you are the good guy in this situation.

A WROL world is what I envision as a mixture of a war zone and a mad-max movie rolled all into your favorite disaster flick. Essentially, I never want to go through anything like this but if something this catastrophic comes your way, you better make sure you have a plan and you are ready to go.

The post What Would a WROL World Look Like? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/18/what-would-a-wrol-world-look-like/feed/ 26
What Are Your Generation’s Chances of Surviving Doomsday?http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/15/what-are-your-generations-chances-of-surviving-doomsday/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/15/what-are-your-generations-chances-of-surviving-doomsday/#comments Fri, 15 May 2015 10:22:46 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14379 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Could the year you were born have any bearing on your chances of surviving doomsday? Are there any advantages for one generation over another when it comes to living through some apocalyptic event? Do these labels (Baby Boomer, Generation X, Millennial), that somehow became affixed to relatively random ranges of time, hold some clue as […]

The post What Are Your Generation’s Chances of Surviving Doomsday? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Could the year you were born have any bearing on your chances of surviving doomsday? Are there any advantages for one generation over another when it comes to living through some apocalyptic event? Do these labels (Baby Boomer, Generation X, Millennial), that somehow became affixed to relatively random ranges of time, hold some clue as to whether or not you and a bunch of your high school buddies could make it through a zombie apocalypse or invasion of mutant bikers from mars?

I was thinking about this topic from the singular perspective of my sometimes least favorite generation the other day: Millennials. Sometimes they are called Generation Y, but no matter what they are called in the media, their collective praises are sung at such high levels, in every facet of our society of how important this latest generation is to our country, planet and probably the entire universe as well. The Millennial generation has received so much attention over the years that at times it nauseates me. If you didn’t know better you would swear anyone who wasn’t a millennial was both stupid and had purposely made a mess out of everything from the paper clip industry to education to race relations and the planet. Thank God we finally had Millennials to save us from ourselves.

No, I am not a millennial.

But this has been going on for a relatively long time of several years and there wasn’t some new event that prompted me to think about them although it could have derived from some conversation in the office I work during the day. The company I work for (yes I have a real job too) has a vested interest in making Millennials happy so I am forever hearing what the Millennials like and don’t like. What motivates millennials and what inspires them, what they prefer in a job and their thoughts on giving back to the community to the point where I simply don’t care what happens to these people to a great extent anymore. After a little too much of this I started to think of a way to excoriate them in the Prepper Journal.

Instead of just looking at this one generation though, I thought it might make sense to step back and look at the three largest or most influential generations we have going right now, Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials and see which of them would have the best chances of surviving doomsday. So, mustering all of the highly anecdotal evidence I can; here is what I believe the results would look like if we faced a TEOTWAWKI disaster. For the record, this is not a scientific article, just in case that wasn’t clear.

what are baby boomers chances for survival?

You don’t get to be in your 60s usually without learning a lot of life’s lessons; some of them the hard way.

Baby Boomer Prepper odds of survival

Born between the years 1946 and 1964 – currently aged 51 to 69

Baby boomers have a lot of things going for them. Generally speaking they no longer have children at home to worry about or if they do, most of them are pretty self-sufficient in the respect that they can fend for themselves if need be and they are so inclined. Baby boomers are looking forward to retirement even if the economy has put their plans on hold for a little while. Houses are largely if not completely paid off for a lot of boomers and some have more than one property.

Most of the big purchases we make in life are already acquired by the time you reach this age so Baby Boomers have a little more disposable income. They also have the benefit of being old enough to remember a good bit of life without the modern conveniences we have today. Even if their parents, “the Greatest Generation” pampered them to the point of enabling societal changes we might not agree with, by and large they have benefited from a good degree of hard work. I think this along with the historical long-view of a well-lived life gives boomers an advantage. They have seen what works and what doesn’t and for those who are awake to the goings on of the society around them, prepping makes sense. You don’t get to be in your 60s usually without learning a lot of life’s lessons; some of them the hard way.

However, age does have its drawbacks. While Baby boomers might be able to afford more time spent training or learning new skills, or making larger purchases of prepping supplies, they also have more health issues associated with age. One study called Baby Boomers, the Sickest Generation with higher rates of Obesity, High Cholesterol, Diabetes and Hypertension. In addition to requiring more medication, parts start failing you the older you get. Some of the most common surgeries for Baby boomers are Knee Replacements, Angioplasty, and Hip replacement. Not good news for a group of people who may be forced to walk long distances in a bug out scenario.

Could Generation X have a leg up when it comes to surviving disaster

Generation X should not suffer from as many of the health issues of their Baby Boomer parents, but aren’t as spry as they once were either.

Generation X Preppers

Born between the years 1964 and 1980 – currently aged 35 to 51

Generation X is the forgotten generation. I say that because I am one of them and with all the attention focused on Baby Boomers retiring and the needs of the Millennials my generation has been rendered largely irrelevant it seems in the eyes of just about everyone. Pew research calls us America’s neglected middle child and that is what it feels like sometimes. However, this really isn’t an issue that keeps me up at night because I, like a lot of my fellow Gen X’ers are too busy at this stage of our life to care. Generation X is the typical quasi middle-aged group and we have our own set of strengths and weaknesses. Finally done with the more self-absorbed time of their lives, people in this generation are focused on protecting their families, growing their wealth if that is possible and are generally more aware of the world around them.

For Generation X preppers, we tend to be well along into careers with a somewhat stable life. Instead of partying every night, we are most likely at home watching TV. We have made it through the “wild times” of our younger days and have gained a little perspective and hopefully wisdom. Generation X may have children still living at home, but depending on where they fall on the scale, their ages might be all over the map. Prepping for family members is more of a focus for this generation. Most Gen X’ers do not have a remote property or enough disposable income to go hog-wild into prepping.

Generation X is coming into a more stable time of their lives financially if they have been lucky to weather the economic storms from the last 6 years and stocking up, while it isn’t easy may be more possible than someone still struggling through college or raising babies. Generation X people should not suffer from as many of the health issues of their Baby Boomer parents, but aren’t as spry as they once were either. Eyesight starts to go during this age and you learn you can’t eat what you used to be able to and quickly lose weight.

Will Millennials even know when disaster hits?

What will the highly functioning Millennial do in a world without Google to search for the answers to their questions?

The Millennial Prepper’s chances of surviving TEOTWAWKI

Born between the years 1980 and 2000 – currently aged 15 to 35

The Millennial generation is characterized by traits that our society views now as highly desirable. Often described as a product of the electronic age they have grown up in, Millennials are multi-taskers, connected via the internet to all their friends, all the time and are tech-savvy. Probably because they have been plugged into some device since they were born. With a world that has electricity, internet and no major problems, these skills seem to be great resume enhancements.

Millennials shouldn’t have any health issues at this point in their lives that couldn’t be cured by getting outside every once in a while, but their reliance on technology could be a huge factor if that is taken away suddenly. What will the highly functioning Millennial do in a world without Google to search for the answers to their questions? What will the young, technologically savvy person do if GPS doesn’t work or the car won’t start? Could this dependence on technology be a hindrance to their survival? Could the same children that were raised on a lifestyle of “Everybody wins” sports teams with helicopter parents who always took care of their every need pull themselves up and do what is necessary to survive or would they sit back and cry “unfair” at any slight that doesn’t go their way?

Just the Facts  Please

I know that the descriptions above are highly stereotypical and are even more they are very subjective. Every single person doesn’t fit into the broad categories above and I know for a fact that your chances of survival come down primarily to what you have inside yourself more so than what a lot of marketing guru’s say about you or your peers.

Knowing that each and every person is unique, I tried to find a better data point that would help me determine which Generation would have the best chances of surviving doomsday. The only objective data I could pull was from the actual viewers of the Prepper Journal so I measured the demographic information through analytics for the last two years. The results were a little surprising to me.

For the last two years May 13 to May 15 (over 6.2 million views)

  • 27% of the total Views were from people aged 55-older (Boomers)
  • 40.95% of the total Views were from people aged 35 – 54 (Generation X)
  • 31.1 % of the total Views were from people aged 18 -34 (Millennials)

So what does this tell me? I had expected that the overwhelming majority of our page views would be from people roughly my age and older but the demographics were very similar across the generations. I had expected the self-absorbed Me Me Me generation, of which 2 of my children belong, would be absent from any site that dealt with concepts like this. I thought that people their age would not care or even think about survival and by extension, their absence would be some verification that they don’t take issues like prepping for disasters seriously. I was wrong.

I have said before that you can’t be too old to prep and I do believe that virtually anyone can take steps to give themselves a better chance, no matter what the disaster turns out to be in your life. If I can measure anything from the data above, it is that people from all the generations are curious about learning the subject of  prepping. Logic would say that everyone is trying to be more prepared and that every generation more or less is equipping themselves with knowledge. Their readership of sites like this one and tons of others suggests they already have the will to survive.

I guess I need to also say that you can never be too young to prep either. I shouldn’t write off a generation of people, largely based on what marketing or the experts tell me. From the youngest grade-school age child to the most senior among us, there are people from all walks of life interested in prepping and that gives me great hope for our future.

Perhaps if something happens we will stop referring to different ages by labels and share a trait more powerful than marketing demographics. Maybe we will all be able to survive as one generation.

The post What Are Your Generation’s Chances of Surviving Doomsday? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/15/what-are-your-generations-chances-of-surviving-doomsday/feed/ 35
DIY Bug Out Trailer Built Your Wayhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/13/diy-bug-out-trailer-built-your-way/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/13/diy-bug-out-trailer-built-your-way/#comments Wed, 13 May 2015 13:23:05 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14353 Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Brian Carter and continues in the current theme of discussing vehicular options for bug out scenarios. For many of us who don’t have the ability to live year round at our survival retreat, a bug out vehicle is the next best thing. A bug out trailer could […]

The post DIY Bug Out Trailer Built Your Way appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Brian Carter and continues in the current theme of discussing vehicular options for bug out scenarios. For many of us who don’t have the ability to live year round at our survival retreat, a bug out vehicle is the next best thing. A bug out trailer could give you much-needed storage space and other amenities that could keep you safe or simply make life better in a disaster scenario.


 

As disaster prepping continues its precipitous rise in popularity it seems every conceivable gadget, defense rig or bit of advice has been done or handed out. Everything’s been thought of, right? Not so fast. When you come right down to it, that advice, those how-to’s are what works for them. “Them” are all the people out there on the internet writing blog articles and posting videos. Most of them have the best intentions. They want to impart their knowledge to others who might benefit from it. But how do you take what they offer and make it your own? How to tweak it, modify it and customize it to what works best for you? This is exactly what should be done for a bug out vehicle, or in this case a bug out trailer. It has to meet your specific needs and include those particular adaptations and improvements that will be comfortably functional for you when everything else is going down the tubes.

Where to Start

First, select a base trailer to build up into the perfect survival masterpiece trailer. Lucky, for you there are a ton of choices out there. Trailers in all shapes and sizes have been manufactured for decades to meet all kinds of utilitarian needs from the professional contractor or construction firm hauling equipment to trailers meant for moving goods to those built for transporting recreational toys. Add to those variations all the recreational camping trailers on the market and the choices seem pretty much endless.

Do your research, envision the finished trailer in your mind, go look at potential buys in person, seek out used trailers for sale to save money, and pick the one that best fits your needs. Remember the longer a trailer is, the more restricted it will be for some locations. Longer trailers, obviously, need a larger turning radius and more space, in general, to maneuver. They are also limited to predominately flat roads as they are unable to manage rolling trails with narrow troughs between steep inclines.

Consider theses types as potential bases to build out from;

  • Box utility trailers
  • Compact horse trailers
  • Teardrop trailers
  • Airstream trailers (compact versions)

To pull that trailer you need to first build your bug out vehicle.

These types provide solid bases from which to customize to your unique specifications offering enough variety to fall within particular budget constraints. The benefit of these trailers is they are already enclosed which is a head start, so to speak, which allows you to jump right into customizing the inside. Having said that, though, there are numerous examples of people who have built up open-topped trailers, or even homemade pickup bed trailers, into rugged, workhorse camp trailers capable of going anywhere the vehicle towing them can go. But more on those later.

Enclosed Trailer

Determine the type of space you want to have inside. Will the trailer be self-contained with room to sleep and move around or will it serve as a gear and supply storage and transport? Once the usage of the inside space is settled on you can set to designing the features; insulated walls, the sleeping and sitting areas, storage (gear, food, water), cooking equipment and fuel (Used inside or out? Is ventilation needed?) and windows.

The biggest decision to make (most likely made before even buying the trailer) is will it be a sleeper or a transporter. Will the environmental conditions require an insulated, indoor living area or will an expansion component like an attached tent or pop-up roof sleeper be sufficient and comfortable?

This trailer has almost every bell and whistle imaginable. Click the image for more photos and details.

This trailer has almost every bell and whistle imaginable. Click the image for more photos and details.

If you’re starting with what is, essentially, an empty box on wheels then it would behoove you add a layer of insulation, especially if you plan to sleep inside. The typical, recreational, camp trailer will already be insulated but it’d be worth checking its condition if the unit is an older model. Insulating a cargo trailer is done in the same fashion as insulating the walls of a house. The trailer will already have ribbed, structural support throughout, just as a wall has studs. Cut and fit sections of insulation between these ribs and cover over with sheets of plywood, measured and cut to fit properly and don’t forget to do the same with the roof.

From here, the rest is a custom job, built to your standards and needs. Aftermarket interiors such as cabinetry, foldout beds, convertible seating (into sleepers), and counters are available from various travel trailer retailers or you can build them yourself. Sinks and plumbing are easily found at supply stores and counters can be built to fit a typical camp stove. Research space-saving techniques online for innovative storage areas, utilizing every empty space inside and out. Add storage fuel and propane tanks, generators and batteries outside to avoid gasses from building up creating dangerous conditions inside. For additional energy supply needs beyond fuel, with most trailers’ flat roofs, consider installing solar panels or even a roof-mounted, wind turbine.

Sleeping tents are a popular add-on to some bug out trailers.

Sleeping tents are a popular add-on to some bug out trailers.

Open Trailer

The open utility trailer comes in a full range of forms and sizes. By the term “open” we mean what is essentially, a flatbed trailer with 1-2 foot sides all around or a shallow, open-topped box on wheels. A popular customization for these is to convert them into tent trailers. A number of companies have cropped up over the years that manufacture folding, or pop up tents that collapse into a zipped up square and overlays the open trailer. The tent and its support platform are hinged on one side and raise like a hatchback and serves as a cover lid for the open-topped trailer. The inside space is used for equipment and supply storage which can be partitioned off to effectively organize supplies. Or a portion of the inside houses slide out storage containers or even full, outdoor kitchen set ups with stove, sink and counter space.

Many people who go this route with their bug-out trailer make them into truly rugged, go anywhere contraptions. Fitted with independent suspension, off-road tires and specialized hitches with couplings that allow for extreme vertical and horizontal towing angles these trailers can go virtually everywhere the vehicle towing them can go.

Sleeping tents are a popular add-on to some bug out trailers.

Sleeping tents are a popular add-on to some bug out trailers.

Both types of trailers, open topped and enclosed, can incorporate external storage containers mounted to the outside walls, on over-sized wheel wells and to the roofs. There is often space on the trailer’s tongue for sturdy containers, propane tanks for cooking fuel or battery banks to store power. The customization opportunities are extensive, limited only by your imagination, time and to some extent, your wallet.

Trailers are really one of the most versatile, bug-out vehicle options able to carry all that’s needed for a survival situation – food, water, shelter and lots more – the essentials, all piled into a mobile home away from home.

About the author: As an environmental scientist and former County Emergency Planner, Brian lends his unique experience in emergency preparedness and wilderness knowledge to USPreppers.com for the sole purpose of helping you and your family better prepare for any emergency situation.

The post DIY Bug Out Trailer Built Your Way appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/13/diy-bug-out-trailer-built-your-way/feed/ 7
Being Prepared to Live in Your Car Successfullyhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/12/being-prepared-to-live-in-your-car-successfully/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/12/being-prepared-to-live-in-your-car-successfully/#comments Tue, 12 May 2015 12:50:17 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14340 Written by J. Cirerol on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by J. Cirerol and he shares his experiences learned from living in his car for over a year. While most of us might not find the idea of living in a car appealing, I think Javier has some lessons to share that might help some of us if […]

The post Being Prepared to Live in Your Car Successfully appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by J. Cirerol on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by J. Cirerol and he shares his experiences learned from living in his car for over a year. While most of us might not find the idea of living in a car appealing, I think Javier has some lessons to share that might help some of us if we are forced to live in austere conditions at some point in our lives.


 

From August 25th 2012 until over a year later, I slept and lived in my car in Los Angeles, California.

I moved to Los Angeles for a dream and did not realize how expensive it was to live there.

So I began planning in my head and thinking how I might save money and how I might get out of the frustrating living situation I was in at the time.

I decided living and sleeping in my car would be an idea that would satisfy both of those things I wanted for my life in Los Angeles. It was truly a survival experience.

Throughout my time sleeping and living in my car, I learned a tremendous amount.

It was a very tough time as well. But it did in fact help me achieve my goals of saving money and being able to live on my “own” in my car.

It didn’t come easy getting that life though. There were many learning experiences.

I began writing a book while I was sleeping in my car. About how to survive living in one’s car.

There are many different aspects when it comes to sleeping and living in your car successfully.

Living in your car takes a plethora of survival skills. It truly is a “survival” experience attempting to live in your car.

How to Live In a Car, Van, or RV

I was doing this so I could save money and get ahead in life. You have to sacrifice in life if you want to get ahead in life. That’s what I have learned. Especially in this economy today, you never know when hardship may hit and having these survival skills in your pocket may just save your life one day when you experience hardship.

I saved a great deal of money and had extra money I wouldn’t have had if I was paying rent somewhere.

I am going to go over a few key aspects it takes to successfully live in your car. Even if you never have to live in your car in your life, it’s good to be prepared. You never know what life may throw your way one day.

What to do for Food:

When it comes to food, there are many options when living in your car. My purpose living in my car was saving as much money as I could. So I keep that in mind when thinking about food.

  1. Canned Foods: There are canned foods such as beans, pastas, and tuna. Have a can opener ready or preferably have an easy to open top. That makes things much easier. Like canned fruits or fruits in plastic cups work as well. They store well too.
  2. Peanut butter and Jelly sandwiches are easy to make in a car. Just have a plastic knife to use to make it.
  3. Homeless shelters: Sometimes or much of the time homeless shelters give free food away as well. Just find one in your local area.
  4. Protein Bars: These are pre-packaged, somewhat healthy and easy to eat on the go.
  5. Fast Food: This is a somewhat cheap and accessible option but I generally went for the foods that were in a grocery store as they were cheaper.

In grocery stores, they usually have a bakery or already-cooked foods section and these are somewhat affordable as well. I used to get 2 pieces of fried chicken and some potatoes and it was decently priced and nice to have some “real” food for a change sometimes.

A good sleeping area can make or break you living in your car.

A good sleeping area can make or break you living in your car.

Where to Sleep:

Where to sleep is probably one of the most key elements of sleeping in your car. A good sleeping area can make or break you living in your car. You have to find a place that is safe but also a place where you can stay on the down-low enough to not be noticed.

I personally slept at a 24-hour grocery store I used to work at. I lucked out. But I’d say if you can manage to sleep at a 24-hour store somewhere that would be good. Or in a neighborhood that is safe where you can stay under the radar.

Once you do find that place you have to make sure to do everything you can to not be noticed.

Your car has to be primed and ready.

I had dark tint on my windows some of the time I slept in my car. If you don’t, you can put dark towels up in front of all windows. You have to be conspicuous though and make sure no one is around when you put them up. Just go to your spot, park, shut the car off and set the towels up. That is what I did. Make sure you choose the same place for sleeping every night. It makes things a lot easier. Don’t tell anyone where you sleep.

Have the radio off long before you get to your spot so you don’t draw any attention to yourself. Additional tip: do not open your doors once you get to your spot or get out of your car at all. It only draws more attention to yourself.

Where to take Showers:

Keeping your hygiene good is absolutely key to sleeping and living in your car and staying unnoticed. The more you are noticed the worse it is for you. You have to give an appearance you are not homeless. If not, you will be kicked out of a lot of places you may hang out at. I took showers at a gym. I got a monthly gym membership. It was only $40 a month. So it was not much. I got to both work out and get clean. I recommend having a backpack with everything you need for the shower and a combination lock to lock up your stuff while you are in the shower.

Where to Spend Your Spare Time At

There are a few options of where to hang out on your day off work or when you have free time.

Fast food chains. They usually have free WiFi for laptops. If you keep a low profile, it’s likely you will go generally unnoticed. Just make sure to keep to yourself for the most part. I didn’t even buy anything much of the time and no one cared to be honest.

Public libraries are great places to hang out in your spare time especially if you have a laptop. There is free WiFi that does not expire like many food places. There are usually a good amount of seats. It is nice and cool inside or warm depending on the climate where you live.

Malls are a decent area to hang out at as well. To find a seat and read a book or walk around. Just as long as you don’t have to pay for parking to be at a mall then it’s great.

The gym is a great place as well. You can work out for a while to kill time and be inside.

Also, if you have made any friends or anything like that, then that will help a ton as well.

Creativity can go a long way toward finding room in your car for necessities.

Creativity can go a long way toward finding room in your car for necessities.

Key items to Keep in your Car:

  1. Gallon of drinking water: It’s important to always stay hydrated when living in your car. You are always going, always on the move much of the time. There were many times it was after work and I hadn’t had any water. It was always nice to have my gallon of water in the backseat under a towel. It costs about $.25 to fill it up at a grocery store.
  2. Pain medicine: Very useful when you have any kind of pain. There were many times while I was living in my car, it was late at night and my head was throbbing. It was nice to reach in my little soccer bag and take some pain medicine and be able to sleep peacefully after that.
  3. Car Fan: At night time I find it tough to sleep without some background noise, so a car fan came in handy. It costs about $20 at an automotive store. It is enough wattage to be on all night and not kill the battery. Many nights it is too hot to sleep in a car without a fan. In the summer time, if I didn’t have a fan I would have suffered greatly.
  4. Power Inverter: This is a device you can plug into your cigarette lighter and charge your laptop, cell phone, or any other electronic device as long it is a small enough wattage. It costs about $20 at many stores. Be careful what you charge. Some things will kill the battery if you charge it too long. Try to charge things while driving when possible because it doesn’t use the battery. The one I had had was 100 watts, which means anything you charge has to generally generate less electricity than that.
  5. Sleeping Bag: A good sleeping bag is key in any environment. Even in Los Angeles, in the winter and many times other seasons of the year as well I needed it. If I hadn’t had a good sleeping bag, I would have frozen and been very uncomfortable the entire night.
  6. Snacks/ Food: It is important to always have some sort of food in your car. Preferably on the floor on the passenger seat side as I did. I used that section for my food. It was easy when I got hungry, I could just reach over and grab a banana to eat when I needed it. It’s crucial to always have at least some stuff ready to eat anytime you may need it. Not eating can cause many problems. There were many times after work I was extremely hungry and was leaving work and had a piece of fruit I reached for and ate right from my car.
  7. Jumper Cables: Sometimes for a couple different reasons, I found that my car battery died and I needed a jump. Most likely because I left the lights on or I charged my electronics too long without driving. It was a pain standing in front of a store asking people if they had jumper cables. I eventually got some jumper cables so when my car battery died, all I had to do was ask anyone who had a car around me if they could give me a jump rather than also having to ask them if they had jumper cables too.
  8. Vitamin C: Living in your car is not a normal thing obviously. There is more wear and tear and hardship than if you had a place to live. So it’s important to keep your immune system up. Vitamin C boosts the immune system. Anything you can consume with a lot of Vitamin C is great. Oranges or any drinks that have vitamin C in them are great. You cannot afford to get sick in your car when you already have enough other things to worry about.
  9. Spare Keys Container: Having spare keys around are very important while sleeping in your car. You never know when you may need them. I kept a spare key for my car always in my wallet. Also, I went to an automotive store and got 2 containers for about $10 that store keys and have a magnetic cylinder on the back so you can connect it to any metal at the bottom of your car for when you lose or lock your keys in your car. Make sure to put it where no one can see it. Make sure no one knows it is there. Only you.

There are many important aspects to surviving living in one’s car. These are a few of the key ones. The key thing is keeping a low profile in all you do. That way, you can have the longevity to stay in your car as long as you need to.

You have to stay mentally strong and continually aware and focused of everyone and everything around you. Keep your head up. Always know it is not forever and is only a temporary situation.

The author in his car.

The author in his car.

You can follow J. Cirerol on twitter @homelesssurvival

The post Being Prepared to Live in Your Car Successfully appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/12/being-prepared-to-live-in-your-car-successfully/feed/ 5
Benefits of a State Guard, State Defense Forcehttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/11/benefits-of-a-state-guard-state-defense-force/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/11/benefits-of-a-state-guard-state-defense-force/#comments Mon, 11 May 2015 14:32:05 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14324 Written by Keith Pounds on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Keith Pounds. You can read more articles from Keith on the Prepper Journal. The concept Keith is discussing below has so many parallels in our present society that you may feel are left unstated. I will leave it to the reader to draw their own conclusions from […]

The post Benefits of a State Guard, State Defense Force appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Keith Pounds on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Keith Pounds. You can read more articles from Keith on the Prepper Journal. The concept Keith is discussing below has so many parallels in our present society that you may feel are left unstated. I will leave it to the reader to draw their own conclusions from Keith’s excellent article. The State Guard could very well have a much more prominent role in our future.


 

“It appears foolhardy to wait until a national emergency is upon us and the National Guard is ordered into the Federal service before at least laying the groundwork for a State defense force” – MG Ellard A. Walsh, president, National Guard Association of the United States, prepared statement to the Senate Committee on Armed Services, July 28, 1955

Across the country, the American populous has become increasingly concerned over how they can protect their families and personal property in the event of a Hurricane Katrina-type natural disaster or man-made terrorists attacks on schools, shopping malls, restaurants, sporting events and any number of other soft or hard targets.

Consider the increase in applications for concealed carry gun permits, individual and group “prepper” activities, and individuals and families practicing evacuation or shelter-in-place drills.

These tell the story that many Americans don’t want to rely on bureaucratic agencies hundreds of miles way to come rescue them in times of disaster.

State Guards (also known as State Defense Forces) – in helping to augment the National Guard and state emergency management agencies, have left not only a fascinating footprint in American history, they are an integral force multiplier for today’s homeland security efforts.

MODERN MILITIAS

Much has been written about the 18th century “state militias” that played noteworthy – if not deciding – roles in the outcome of America’s defeat of the British Army.

Yet little is known about how prominent these citizen patriots have been in the present day and – like their progenitors – volunteer and train most often without pay to defend and protect their homes and local communities.

As America entered World War I, some 300,000 National Guard members were called to federal service – most to fight overseas. This left many states void of one of the most critical means of responding to local/state disasters.

In the Dec. 2004 edition of the Joint Center for Operational Analysis Journal – and republished in Dec. 2009 by the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center, Center for Army Lessons Learned – COL (Ret) John R. Brinkerhoff wrote specifically about how State Guards stepped-in to fill critical gaps during World War I.

He noted that just months after Congress enacted the Home Defense Act (June 1917), there were State Guard units in 42 states with an aggregate strength of 100,000.

However, once the war was over, Congress withdrew authorization for these units.

A 2010 Heritage Foundation survey, “The 21st-century militia: State defense forces and homeland security,” highlighted that leading up to World War II  Congress similarly authorized the formation of State Guards, resulting in a total enrollment of some 150,000 members.

While Congress again withdrew this authorization after the war, State Guards were reinstated in 1950 during hostilities in Korea.

Finally, in 1955, permanent authorization was passed, establishing the State Guards we see in existence today.

By 1969, the Gates Commission recommended what was called the “Total Force Concept,” to replace conscription – better known as “the draft” – with the all-volunteer military.

As the Total Force Concept increased the likelihood of Reserve and National Guard units being called to federal duty, many policy makers realized the importance of State Guards in providing security and emergency response back home.

THE GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR

DisasterRelief

State Guard forces can assist locally in a disaster well before any Federal response could be coordinated.

 

For many years, State Guards stood ready to provide protection for armories, or as “Honor Guards” for local events or military funerals, when National Guard personnel were unavailable.

As National Guard units were called to serve overseas in the Global War on Terror, State Guards were once again realized as an important force multiplier in state emergency management.

In most states, after the 9/11 attacks, State Guard mission sets increased their focus on local emergency response, disaster recovery, and critical infrastructure protection.

Though National Guard units have returned home with the draw-down of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, continuing conflicts and threats from across the globe – including expanding terrorist threats – prove that things are in no sense “back to normal.”

A Department of Defense report entitled, “Evaluation of Department of Defense Interaction with State Defense forces” by the U.S. Deputy Inspector General, Special Plans and Operations, found that in April 2014, 23 states and Puerto Rico maintained State Guards with an estimated strength of 14,000.

Just months after this report, Arizona became the 25th state or territory to organize a State Guard.

KATRINA

Hurricane Katrina clearly proved that – while local law enforcement is responsible for maintaining law and order – catastrophic events can quickly overwhelm local resources.

While state governors can call on federal aid and support, trained State Guard personnel – already stationed within the state – can respond much more quickly than federal resources, which can be bureaucratically slow to respond.

HamRadioInDisasters

State Guard units can bring communication options into an area affected by disaster.

Statewide catastrophes – whether natural or man-made – will require personnel trained in emergency management response and recovery, including roadway evacuation support, the logistics of food distribution and emergency shelters, local security, damage assessment, and even urban, wilderness and water search and rescue.

The 2010 Heritage Foundation survey – purportedly the first attempt by any organization to conduct a comprehensive survey of the nation’s State Guards – found that State Guard members from at least eight states responded to assist with Katrina recovery efforts.

A 2012 Heritage Foundation report entitled, “Why more states should establish state defense forces,” found that Katrina wiped out some 2,000 cell phone towers and destroyed both land line and 911 services.

The report highlighted the communication capabilities of the South Carolina State Guard which had, “two mobile communications trailers, containing radios capable of high frequency, VHF/UHF and general mobile radio service (GMRS) transmission, in addition to air-to-ground radio capabilities (and) repeater systems.”

RECRUITMENT AND TRAINING

The 2010 Heritage survey further found that the average age of a State Guard member is 42 years.

The 2005, “A guide for establishing a state defense force with a homeland security mission,” for the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, attributed the seemingly advanced age of members to a large number of former or retired members of the armed forces.

As it noted, many veterans serve in State Guards because of, “the comfort level obtained from being among uniformed persons once again, or because of having served the military well and received much in return wish to ‘repay’ that emotional ‘debt’ through continued community service…”

Still, while many younger State Guard members (ages 17-30) may have chosen not to join the armed forces, the State Guard satisfies the desires of those who feel called to serve their state or local community.

As State Guards are designed for state disaster “response and recovery” rather than “combat,” they tend to have less stringent physical fitness requirements than federal armed forces. This often allows those with minor medical issues to serve in many important capacities.

Still, many units may desire at least some young, more physically fit members to serve on quick responding search and rescue or damage assessment teams.

It is reasonable to expect State Guards to rely increasingly on both seasoned veterans as well as young, eager, more physically fit members.

CONCLUSION

With ongoing – and growing – concerns over budget cuts and overall fiscal responsibilities at the local, state and federal levels, the increased reliance of low-cost, quick-responding State Guard’s present as a no-brainier.

In recognizing the unpredictably volatile potential of both natural and man-made disasters, we do a disservice to our communities if we do not stand ready with highly trained emergency management volunteers who can place “boots on the ground” in a matter of hours, rather than days or weeks.

Many of us know all too well that the heart of emergency response is “local.” We understand the importance of a ready, local preparedness in the event of a catastrophic event. No one wants to see members of their own community stranded on rooftops with no one to come rescue them for days.

For anyone concerned about his or her own family safety, the safety of their community, those looking into “prepping,” or those simply wanting to give aid and assistance to their local community, when local resources become overwhelmed, perhaps one of the most efficient responses includes our own State Guards.

KeithPoundsAbout the author: Keith Pounds is a former hospital corpsman (medic) having served in the U.S. Navy and with the Marines. In 2012, he was designated as an Honorary Green Beret by the S.C. Chapter of the Special Forces Association. He holds an MBA with a concentration in organizational psychology and is the president and CEO of Countercon, a Columbia, S.C.-based counter-terrorism consulting company, and serves as a captain in the S.C. State Guard.

The post Benefits of a State Guard, State Defense Force appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/11/benefits-of-a-state-guard-state-defense-force/feed/ 6
The Worst Way to Diehttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/09/the-worst-way-to-die/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/09/the-worst-way-to-die/#comments Sat, 09 May 2015 18:14:53 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14317 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

How many of you have played this game on a long car trip where you asked the people around you what is the worst way to die? A version of this goes something like; would you rather drown in the ocean or be burnt alive in a building fire? Gruesome stuff I know, but I […]

The post The Worst Way to Die appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

How many of you have played this game on a long car trip where you asked the people around you what is the worst way to die? A version of this goes something like; would you rather drown in the ocean or be burnt alive in a building fire? Gruesome stuff I know, but I think all of us face our own mortality in different ways at different times of our lives. We hypothesize situations that we could find ourselves in that would bring about death as a way discussing our fears in the hopes of possibly looking the boogie-man in the face and laughing at him.

For me, dying of old age is not something I ever really consider and perhaps that is common to anyone who at my age should be more or less half a life away from that possibility, unless something tragic happens. Dying of old age or quietly slipping off to sleep and never waking for me seems to be a pleasant way to depart from this earth. It should go without saying that I hope I have a very long time left on this earth before that happens, but when it comes to subjects that we frequently discuss on the Prepper Journal, dying quietly in a peaceful bed doesn’t often raise to the top of the conversation. It is usually death by a mob, starving to death or succumbing to other evil in some way.

For a long time, I have viewed the possibility of dying through some lens of a disaster. This is the TEOTWAWKI version of that same game but with a more bleak and sinister twist thrown in. Would you rather die defending your home from marauders who bash your skull in with bats to get to all of your stored prepping supplies or die in the woods after you bug out, suffer a fall down a mountain that leaves you critically injured and a bear slowly eats you?

Thinking about death

I had a frequent contributor, Elizabeth ask me this question a while back:

“Why do you think it’s important for as many people as possible to be self-sufficient in the event any disaster occurs?”

I guess it depends on her context but I assume the question is to be taken on its face. I thought about this for a while because the answer seemed so obvious on one hand but it caused me to wonder if there wasn’t a deeper motivation as well. On the surface it seems simple, doesn’t it? I want as many people to be able to take care of themselves so that you aren’t reliant on anyone else (within reason) for your survival. By taking steps to get prepared for all manner of life’s surprises, individuals and families everywhere would be better able to provide for their own survival.

But if you take that a level deeper you have to say, what is survival? Are there different ways to survive? Does survival mean the same thing to everyone or is it simple a biological function where your body has what it needs to keep doing that miraculous thing it does? You have enough calories, water and shelter for your organs to keep doing what they are designed to do? Is survival all we should hope for?

Prisoners are surviving in jail aren’t they? I wouldn’t want that kind of life, but they have food, shelter and all of the things they need for their organs to function. Slaves are surviving too I guess, but I wouldn’t want to be a slave. Indentured servants, prostitutes, congressional pages…So I believe that being self-sufficient should be about more than simple survival. Maybe you are focused on survival in the short-term, but the longer goal should be a more full life. I won’t try to describe what that means for anyone else. Each of you likely has your own vision of a perfect life if we can ever achieve that. Instinctively you likely know your own measure of the difference between living and surviving.

For me being prepared has many facets. The first and easiest to achieve is that simple survival – the basics of life. Ensuring you have a way to obtain clean drinking water, food, shelter and security all check the box on the survival aspect, but assuming you are able to do all of these things, is that enough? Is all that you are preparing for distilled down to simple survival? Is there anything more we should be keeping in mind for ourselves and our families?

The worst way to die

For me the worst way to die is to fail my family in a way or ways that cause them to not be able to survive first of all, but to live a full life after the reason for survival has passed more importantly. Do I want to be able to provide food and clothing, shelter and security for them? Of course I do, but I don’t want to stop there. I focus on the survival aspect because in some ways that is the easier option to consider initially. It doesn’t take a whole lot of imagination to plan on ways to feed your family. The logistics all need to be worked out, but the usual path is with food. Duh!

Water, Shelter and even Security are pretty similar when you think about it too. Of course even the most prepared individual isn’t an island unto themselves. You can have other forces come into your life to change or impact your preparations, but as far as what you can control; the survival basics seem to be just that. Basic.

The living part; what you do with your life after survival has been achieved, is what makes you smile. It is what gives you hope and a will to go on I think. Do you think you would be happy living in a FEMA camp even if you had three square meals a day, a roof over your head and relative safety? Would you feel content if your children were taken from you even though they were fed when you might not have been able to provide for them? Do you think you would be happy (living) hiding in the woods, wondering if every twig snapping was another person you would have to defend your life from?

I guess for me, I want the same things for all of the readers of my blog that I want for my own family. That is the ability, resources and motivation to be able to provide for our family’s survival so that once the danger has passed we can all live life again. We should strive for more than just existing because I think if that is your only measure of success you can fall into a trap. I draw some parallels to the analogy of trading freedom for security. We should strive for both on our own terms as much as possible. By prepping today we are positioning ourselves both to be able to react more quickly to situations we see approaching as well as coming through on the other side in better shape because of what we do now.

Prepping is about more than buying a bunch of supplies. It is a mindset that we have because we are thinking ahead to what the future could hold. Initially that future might bring chaos, disaster and sorrow but we as preppers have to think beyond the disaster. We have to plan for a life further down the road from the tragedy. We should be planning to survive so that we can life a full life again, not simply exist. The worst way for me to die is to fail at that mission for my family. What’s yours?

The post The Worst Way to Die appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/09/the-worst-way-to-die/feed/ 21
What Is the Best Bunker Design?http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/08/what-is-the-best-bunker-design/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/08/what-is-the-best-bunker-design/#comments Fri, 08 May 2015 13:36:19 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14296 Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Clarence Mason and in it he compares and contrasts two different survival bunker designs. Each have their advantages, but if you are considering building your own survival retreat option in the future, it makes sense to consider what is the best bunker design before you get too […]

The post What Is the Best Bunker Design? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This article was generously contributed by Clarence Mason and in it he compares and contrasts two different survival bunker designs. Each have their advantages, but if you are considering building your own survival retreat option in the future, it makes sense to consider what is the best bunker design before you get too far down the planning road.


 

I’ve read several excellent articles in the Prepper Journal.

Many are written by Pat Henry, who I recently had the pleasure of having a conversation with. As a result of our conversation, I’ve decided to write this story, in the hope of inspiring people to educate and prepare themselves in dealing with disasters, man-made or natural, that require hardened protection.

I want to talk about what I believe to be the most critical necessity in the event the SHTF: The ability to shelter in place, in a shelter that provides protection from radiation, bombs, attacks, tornadoes and numerous other threats to safety.

While there are above ground shelters that do offer protection from some of the above mentioned threats, hands down, the best place to be is UNDERGROUND.

That said, with the exception of a line of Tornadoes passing through, you need to be psychologically and physically prepared to go underground for at least 2-3 weeks.

The amount of time will of course depend on the extent and type of event that has or is occurring.

Let’s assume you have a bunker and did your homework and have an adequate supply of MRE’s, water and other necessities for what could be your INITIAL 2-3 week stay.

What is the best bunker design?

I want to address the psychological aspect of being underground, in a confined space, and the issues/considerations faced by the occupants with regard to the Type, Shape and Utility of your surroundings.

Let’s face it, practical and usable space quickly becomes a valuable commodity when you are going to spend a significant amount of time in the shelter before venturing topside, and that environment should be comfortable, healthy and space efficient. You are going to be stressed enough if you are in there, and the last thing you need is the additional stress of a cramped, unfriendly environment.

Story

I present this question for your consideration: Would you rather be in a claustrophobic steel pipe or in the open area provided by a square-shaped reinforced concrete bunker that is already finished with non-toxic material?

If steel pipes and steel boxes were the best shelter platform, the Military would be using them, and they’re not….they are still using reinforced concrete. There has to be something to be said about that, and there is: Mass, Density, Thermal Resistance, Sound Attenuation and Cost, to name a few.

All the information you need to implement a high security and self-sufficient residence or retreat.

Furthermore, steel shelters, which are typically 3/16- 1/4 of an inch thick, need to be buried DEEP, in order to provide the proper comparative level of protection against radiation. They are typically installed with 8-10 feet of earth covering the top and this presents a considerable number of challenges with regard to the costs for excavating, the need to hire a crane and other issues.

For example, a 10 foot Pipe that is 20 feet long will require an 18-20 feet deep hole and provides a gross interior area of 1,570 cubic feet. Keep in mind that the interior surface is curved ( similar to being in a submarine ), and therefore requires a floor to be installed, which reduces headroom. Simply put, a pipe doesn’t lend itself to being space efficient and comfortable.

Comparatively, a 10 foot tall, 10 foot wide and 20 foot long Concrete shelter will only require a 12-13 foot deep hole, provides a gross interior area of 2,000 cubic feet, does not require a floor to be installed, has no loss of headroom anywhere inside the structure and only needs to have 2-3 feet of earth cover overhead.

If the height of the Concrete shelter is decreased to 8 feet ( the same height of the ceilings in your home), the required depth of the hole is reduced to 10-11 feet and the gross interior area is 1,600 cubic feet. This is still more than a 10 foot pipe of the same length while also providing complete use of the space, as the side walls are not coming in toward the center as they do in a pipe.

Space Comparison of a 10 ft Pipe to a 10ft Square

Space Comparison of a 10 ft Pipe to a 10ft Square

In my opinion, the 2 feet of headroom throughout is more than adequate.

Having adequately addressed the space issue, I’d like to make a quick point on the use of ICF’s (Insulated Concrete Forms) for long-term underground shelters.

ICF’s are made of Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) foam blocks that are put together like Leggo’s, a double row of rebar is installed as the foam blocks are connected and when the walls are completed, concrete is pumped into them.

Of biggest concern with these systems is the fact that the Polystyrene contains toxic chemicals. Not only because they are made of petroleum-based foamed plastics, but also because they contain fire-retardant chemicals that are also toxic. Among these chemicals is HBCD (Hexabromocyclododecane).

HBCD has been classified as a category 2 for reproductive toxicity.[6] Since August 2010 Hexabromocyclododecanes are included in the EPA‘s List of Chemicals of Concern.[7] On May 2013 the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) decided to include HBCD in the Convention’s Annex A for elimination, with specific exemptions for expanded and extruded polystyrene in buildings needed to give countries time to phase-in safer substitutes. HBCD is listed for elimination, but with a specific exemption for expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS) in buildings.

Additionally, EPS is labeled a flammable material and MUST be covered with a non-flammable material such as fire rated sheetrock or masonry to limit surface exposure to possible ignition sources. This covering also reduces exposure to the off-gassing of other chemicals considered to be toxic that occurs without exposure to fire.

When it burns, EPS produces heavy, acrid and toxic smoke. This obviously presents another serious problem when you are in a confined space, from which there is no escape. Even a small event in which this material merely smoldered with no open flame can/would have dire consequences for the occupants. Exposure to the heavy smoke generated, even if only for a few minutes, has been shown to be lethal.

In short, you are looking for your shelter to provide you a safe, healthy and fireproof refuge from a multitude of disaster scenarios. The dangerous and potentially lethal points made above should not be overlooked when making a decision in choosing a bunker or shelter.

About the author: Clarence Mason has 35 concurrent years of interdisciplinary experience and training in the public and private sectors of the fire service, law enforcement and investigations. Along with his respected colleagues, Clarence has been an invited speaker/presenter on matters involving National and State Security, Disaster Planning/Management and Risk Assessment. Clarence has extensive knowledge and experience in the building of commercial and residential concrete structures, and as a result of blending these unique experiences, is also the inventor of a patented system designed to provide the levels of protections needed in the building industry. You can learn more about the building products in this article at www.tempestbuildingsystems.com

The post What Is the Best Bunker Design? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/08/what-is-the-best-bunker-design/feed/ 9
What to Pack for a Day Hikehttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/06/day-hike-checklist/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/06/day-hike-checklist/#comments Wed, 06 May 2015 20:59:58 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14278 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Planning a day hike can teach you so many skills that you can incorporate into your bug out plans. I have advocated that longer backpacking trips are extremely valuable for the lessons you can learn from them, which apply directly to any plans you have of strapping that heavy pack on your back and hiking […]

The post What to Pack for a Day Hike appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Planning a day hike can teach you so many skills that you can incorporate into your bug out plans. I have advocated that longer backpacking trips are extremely valuable for the lessons you can learn from them, which apply directly to any plans you have of strapping that heavy pack on your back and hiking into the local forest. A day hike gives you similar opportunities to learn, practice your bug out plan, and get some great exercise at the same time in the beauty of nature. What’s not to love?

You shouldn’t just walk into the woods unprepared though even when by definition; a day hike should have you home at night. Accidents happen and that is one reason why I am a prepper. I like to think that even small day hikes present opportunities for me to be able to take care of myself or my family if something unexpected happens.   Do you think Aaron Ralston, famously portrayed in the movie 127 Hours didn’t plan to make it home that night he left? Aaron spent over 5 days trapped by a giant bolder and was only able to free himself by first breaking, then cutting off his own arm. Talk about survival!

Each year there are numerous people lost or stranded in the wilderness so it makes perfect sense to me to pack for unplanned visits to the woods.

All of that isn’t to say that I think you should bring your full Bug Out Bag with you, but for some of you that might be a good idea to see how it feels after a few hours. My wife and I did this before our first backpacking trip to try out items like our portable stove, water filtration items, eat some of the freeze-dried food we would live off of in the wilderness but most importantly to see how lugging our new backpacks full of gear felt. That short day hike taught us a lot about our packs so I put together this list below for any of you who might be considering the same thing  on a day hike scale.

Day hike checklist

Feel free to print this day hike checklist off and use it for your own adventures. The items I list below are just suggestions. Where you live , the environment you will be experiencing on your day hike and personal abilities should all factor into your own choices, but this list should cover the basics needed for survival.

A day hike checklist will help you be prepared for unforeseen situations.

A day hike checklist will help you be prepared for unforeseen situations.

Navigation

Map and Compass – Who wants to get lost out in the great outdoors? Having a good compass and a map of your area are very important for anything but the shortest hikes in a National Park where the trail is well-marked and usually less than a few miles. Maps are more important if you aren’t familiar with the area, the terrain is treacherous,  steep or the environment is harsher (think Grand Canyon). National Geographic Trails Illustrated Maps are excellent and usually available for most of the larger destinations. These maps are waterproof which is a huge plus if you sweat like a beast or are planning to ford the local river to punch your bad ass hiker card.

You also need to know how to use that compass and be able to read a map.

Sun Protection

Sunglasses – Sunglasses, especially polarized lenses are a must have if for nothing else than looking cool. Seriously, sunglasses will protect your eyes and keep you possibly from loosing your footing in the gaze of the setting sun.

Chap stick/Lip Balm –This is one thing that I never used to carry until I went backpacking in the winter one time. Usually I never use chap stick, but this one time I had a cold and my nose was stuffed up which meant I was breathing out of my mouth. Eventually, my lips were nice and chapped so some good lip balm, although it isn’t a life saver, sure makes the journey smoother. Yes I said that.

A good headlamp doesn’t have to cost a fortune and can be a lifesaver if you are walking in the dark.

Hat – I try to always wear a hat when I am in the woods. In the winter it is something to keep me warm like a toboggan or I can go Crocodile Dundee with my Outback Trading Company River Guide hat. Nothing beats one of these if you are caught in the rain. They also do an excellent job of keeping the sun off your face. In hotter weather a lighter option might be better like the OR Helios hat.

Protective layers – In the wintertime this is usually more of a thought but even in the summer I plan for something should the temperatures drop or I am forced to spend the night in the woods. This can be as simple as a capilene base layer or a shemagh. When you are hiking you are burning energy that keeps you warm. I try to plan for what I would want as clothing if I couldn’t move.

Light – Always have a light with you. My flashlight is part of my EDC kit and even sitting here at my computer, I have a flashlight on me. When I am going hiking I always take a headlamp as well because I think they are superior when you are walking in the dark. These come in all prices but you don’t have to spend a fortune on a good headlamp.

First Aid Kit – I don’t expect anyone to take the supplies to be able to suture their arm if they have to hack it off with a dull multitool, but a good first aid kit should always go with you. I have the ultralight first aid kit from Adventure medical, but I augment this with a tourniquet and an extra blood stopper bandage. We have had to break into the first aid kit on multiple occasions for simple cuts and scrapes to aspirin.

Ability to make fire – You may be forced to spend the night in the woods and if this happens to you it makes sense to have something to make a fire with. Normally if I am out on an official backpacking trip I have several methods just in case, but for day hikes I have a simple Bic lighter that I have wrapped about 3 feet of duct tape around just in case. This way I can easily start a fire if needed. I keep this in a waterproof case and obviously you can also take a magnesium striker as backup.

Tools – It may sound like overkill but I take a knife and my multitool. I don’t lug my big end of the world survival knife on day hikes but I have my favorite folder as well as my Leatherman which should cover just about any need I have. Even if that need is to saw a bone in half.

Camelbak Antidote 100 oz. capacity and tough as nails.

Food – A lot of people take off into the woods thinking they will be back in a few hours only to find themselves stranded for a couple of days. Now, you won’t die technically for a pretty long time from starvation but I always pack some food in my backpack . If the duration of the hike is longer, I will even pack an extra day’s meal. This can be as simple as an MRE although there are lighter options like a Freeze-dried pouch of something like my favorite, chilli-mac, or a few Cliff bars or some trail mix. Even if you don’t eat them, it is a good idea to have them just in case.

Water – This can be as simple as a bottle of water or a water bladder. I have grown to appreciate the usefulness (and capacity) of my Camelbak Antidote 100 oz. Plus, I don’t have to stretch my arms behind me or take off my pack to get a drink. If I am going to a new place then I also pack my Sawyer Mini water filter so I can resupply if needed. I haven’t had to use that yet as the Camelbak has always been enough for my hikes, but you never know.

Shelter – For me I usually just have the simple emergency mylar blanket or a survival bivvy . They aren’t perfect, but they are better than nothing. I wouldn’t likely put a sleeping bag in a day pack. You might argue that you should be able to build your own shelter and I agree, but what if you are trapped by a bolder or for some other reason aren’t able to build your favorite debris shelter? Options.

Extra items – Depending on the location I will take a GPS to back up my map reading. Sometimes I will take extra batteries for the electronics, but usually I just put fresh rechargeable batteries in there before we leave. Other nice to haves are dependent upon how much room I have in my pack like a mat for sitting down that I made out of a piece of reflective insulation material. It’s very lightweight and could even double as a signaling device. I will also take a trash bag sometimes because they, like duct tape have a lot of uses. My packs all have whistles as well. You will have other items you want to bring.

What items did I miss? What do you pack on your day hikes?

The post What to Pack for a Day Hike appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/06/day-hike-checklist/feed/ 12
Free Homesteading and Survival Manualshttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/04/free-homesteading-and-survival-manuals/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/04/free-homesteading-and-survival-manuals/#comments Mon, 04 May 2015 17:34:31 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14260 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Preppers are always looking to learn additional skills and methods for survival. In some cases knowledge comes from reading prepper blogs like the Prepper Journal. Other times, you can obtain training from reputable instructors in disciplines like self-defense, weapons training and first aid. Yet another source that many people use are books. Books are a […]

The post Free Homesteading and Survival Manuals appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

Preppers are always looking to learn additional skills and methods for survival. In some cases knowledge comes from reading prepper blogs like the Prepper Journal. Other times, you can obtain training from reputable instructors in disciplines like self-defense, weapons training and first aid. Yet another source that many people use are books.

Books are a great prepper resource in my opinion that you shouldn’t neglect as part of your prepping efforts. They might not replace skills you can acquire by other means, but they are something that you may be able to fall back on as a source of information. I recommend keeping a wide range of books in your own prepping library to use in the case that the glorious internet isn’t available. With printed material, you can see obtain knowledge without Google.

While the internet is still running though, there are hundreds of great survival manuals available for the download. Many preppers have binders full of these free manuals that they have downloaded and printed out. I was able to pull a fairly large list of survival manuals, first aid manuals and homesteading topics for your information. You can use all of these links to build your knowledge and enhance your own survival library. If you have any other links please let me know and I can add those in.

Free First Aid Manuals

Free Homesteading Manuals

Free Recipe and Cookbook/Food Preservation Manuals

Free Bushcraft Manuals

Free Survival Manuals

 

The post Free Homesteading and Survival Manuals appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/04/free-homesteading-and-survival-manuals/feed/ 2
Living a Prepared Life Carries Risks: Keep From Becoming the Prey!http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/02/living-a-prepared-life-carries-risks-keep-from-becoming-the-prey/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/02/living-a-prepared-life-carries-risks-keep-from-becoming-the-prey/#comments Sat, 02 May 2015 16:41:44 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14231 Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

If you have made the choice to live a survivalist or prepper lifestyle, you did it knowing you were making a choice that included some degree of risk. The only question would be what form the risk would eventually take. For most of these resourceful men and women, the risk actually comes from a variety […]

The post Living a Prepared Life Carries Risks: Keep From Becoming the Prey! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

If you have made the choice to live a survivalist or prepper lifestyle, you did it knowing you were making a choice that included some degree of risk. The only question would be what form the risk would eventually take. For most of these resourceful men and women, the risk actually comes from a variety of sources and, like all other aspects of their lives, preparation is key to surviving and thriving.

The Risk of Theft & Property Damage

Whether you are an urban prepper or live on a remote homestead, a prepared lifestyle can be dangerous. Not only are you likely to have a valuable supply of food and supplies, but chances are you also have weapons, ammunition and outdoor gear that thieves can easily steal and resell.

Protecting these items requires an approach specific to your actual location and situation. The urban prepper can access both technology and local law enforcement to help secure the property and stored goods; however, a rural prepper may lack access to law enforcement assistance and, if the homestead or bunker is off-the-grid, there may be no option of a security system.

No matter where your homestead is located, there are a few things you can learn to do to decrease the odds that you will fall victim to a theft or vandalism.

  • Become hyper-observant; this means being constantly aware of your surroundings and watching for anything that seems to be out of place, such as a strange car or someone who is lingering and asking a lot of questions
  • Establish good security routines; locking doors and gates even when you’re home, keeping valuables locked in safes or even a guard dog are all options
  • Find a buddy; no matter how self-reliant you are, there will be a time when you need help. Find a trustworthy person or family member in the area and work together to watch out for each other
  • Divide valuables; instead of storing all your valuables — cash, jewelry, precious metals, guns, ammo — in one safe, split the items between two safes and put them in separate locations on the property

Maintaining Financial Security

As a prepper, survivalist or just someone who has concerns about the perilous economic state we are in, you may have already moved some of your assets into cash or gold. While prudent, this won’t keep you safe from someone who wants to take your identity. Given the chance, these criminals will drain your bank accounts, establish credit and mortgage accounts and perhaps even file a tax return in your name. Recovering your assets can take years and is a huge expense, so it is best to understand the threat and deal with it proactively before the damage is done.

  • Watch all accounts closely for even small changes or errors and deal with them immediately
  • Shred or burn documents that you no longer need
  • Use a reputable identity theft protection service to watch over your assets around the clock
  • Store important papers in a fireproof safe or bank safe deposit box
  • Pick up mail daily from your mailbox and if this is not possible, rent a P.O. box

Mitigating Health Risks

We frequently overlook the health aspect of prepping because it requires more of us I think than  some of the other items on our prepping checklist. You can’t log onto your favorite website and purchase good health. You can’t put a slimmer more muscular physique on your credit card; that takes discipline, time and hard work for a lot of us. Your health is one of the important intangibles and being in a state of good health will help you in many ways. You may have to run to avoid danger.

  • Start a fitness program and pay better attention to the foods and chemicals you put into your body.
  • Try to remove dependence on medication where possible by lifestyle changes.
  • Focus on positive benefits of being prepared as opposed to getting depressed by possible situations.
  • Train in stressful environments so your body and mind can be conditioned to the possible scenarios you are prepping for

These are just a few ideas for how preppers can reduce risk in our lives but there are millions more. What ideas do you have?

 

The post Living a Prepared Life Carries Risks: Keep From Becoming the Prey! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/02/living-a-prepared-life-carries-risks-keep-from-becoming-the-prey/feed/ 2
Urban Survival Skills That Will Keep You Alivehttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/01/urban-survival-skills-that-will-keep-you-alive/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/01/urban-survival-skills-that-will-keep-you-alive/#comments Fri, 01 May 2015 22:43:31 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14233 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

When the subject of Survival comes up in conversation, what do you think of? I am sure context plays a big part in the answer to that question, but for me personally it used to always conjure up the shipwrecked on a deserted island idea of survival. It was that or the lone hiker scenario […]

The post Urban Survival Skills That Will Keep You Alive appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

When the subject of Survival comes up in conversation, what do you think of? I am sure context plays a big part in the answer to that question, but for me personally it used to always conjure up the shipwrecked on a deserted island idea of survival. It was that or the lone hiker scenario where you are lost in the wilderness, miles away from civilization. I used to love watching Bear Grylls’ Man vs. Wild many years back on his first TV show where he would present just those types of scenarios and show tips on how to survive and get back to civilization.

The word ‘survival’ has a very different connotation to a lot of people but I think that many people out there limit their view of surviving to the way I used to. When I started getting into the concepts behind prepping, part of my thought process was that I would only need my true survival skills if I was shipwrecked or lost. I almost neglected the more likely scenario that I would need survival skills where I lived and worked every day. While I see the benefit of wilderness survival skills, I would be much more likely to need urban survival skills on any given day. There are some skills that overlap, but there are many differences between trying to survive in the woods and trying to survive in the urban jungle.

For this post I wanted to list several urban survival skills that while they may share some characteristics of their wilderness cousins, could still help you more in an urban environment if you are faced with some type of urban SHTF scenario.

Urban Survival Skills

IFF_44_Dec14_Civilience_1_DD-700x500

Finding and disinfecting water – Enough with the water you say! I know, at times I feel myself like I am beating a dead horse, but water has to be a priority for survival regardless of where you are. Scratch that, clean water needs to be a priority especially in an urban survival scenario where larger concentrations of people and unhygienic conditions breed disease very quickly. When the water is contaminated with Cholera you won’t be engaged much in the old survival mode of defending your homestead, you will be defending the bed from getting made and the bathroom (if you make it there) from smelling fresh. Knowing how to find sources of water in urban environments is a very important skill.

Bartering/Negotiating – I lumped these two skills in here because I think they are similar enough that it makes sense. In my urban survival nightmare I picture chaos in the short-term followed by a long period of trying to work together for most and trying to get over on people for some. Bartering for goods is a topic we talk about all of the time, but along with bartering (trading a good or service for another good or service) you will have to have the soft skills of negotiating. When you are trading someone eggs for a few extra rounds of 9mm, the negotiating is more soft-skills based. In a time like this emotional intelligence will go a long way. The other side of this coin is that you might find yourself negotiating with people who have an animosity toward you. You might have to negotiate an end to violence or the release of one of your party who has been captured. Don’t laugh; we are talking about the end of the world as we know it here.

Medical Skills – Just like in the wilderness, people get injured in the urban environments too and like almost any SHTF scenario we discuss you can plan for the local Primecare to be out of business when you really need it. The hospital emergency room, if you can get there might be overflowing with other people and it’s possible you would want to avoid sickness as much as humanly possible anyway. Knowing how to treat injuries, wounds, burns and illnesses could keep both your group healthy and could even be used as a source of barter in the worst of cases. Resources like survival medical books, books on medicinal herbs and even old-fashioned remedies might be a good addition to your growing survival library.

Can you make a hobo stove?

Can you make a hobo stove?

Adaptability/Creativity/ Flexibility – These aren’t technically what you might consider as skills but the ability to modify your behavior in beneficial ways based upon what you are currently faced with is a huge advantage. The shower doesn’t run anymore so you set a camp shower in the sun for a few hours, screw a plant hook into the wall in the shower and Voila! You now have maybe the only working shower even in austere environments. Bonus points if you don’t even have a camp shower but you were able to reuse some old plumbing parts and an empty 5 gallon bucket that used to have dry wall compound in it. Showers might seem like a pretty simple problem to solve but it is that type of thinking that will serve you well when you aren’t going to be able to do things the normal way. You have to be able to think outside the box and as cliché as that sounds it is going to help you. For instance, could you make a hobo stove out of nothing but your survival knife and a big empty can?

Gunsmithing would be a highly specialized and sought after post SHTF skill.

Repairing things – If the grid goes down you likely won’t be able to call the dishwasher repairman, or the plumber or the electrician or a lot of people. Of course if the power is out, then you have other problems. Mechanics, engineers and people who like to tinker with things to see how they work; crack them open and fix on them will be a good addition to your survival team. If you have the ability to repair broken items you will be not only valuable to yourself, but you might even be able to open your own post-apocalyptic store and charge for your services. Gunsmithing comes to mind as a possibly appropriate skill to know along with all of the tools you would need to work on weapons.

Gardening – Yes this is a skill. If you have never gardened then you should take the time now to learn because it isn’t as simple as Jack and the Beanstalk made it look. Sure you have grown a couple of tomato plants on your porch, but what about growing enough food for your family to live off of all year long? That is a lot of work and isn’t something you can take lightly. Even if you have that awesome can of survival seeds, you better not wait until SHTF to start digging in the dirt.

Riots

Maintaining a secure shelter – I wrote in another article about the subject of defending yourself from the perspective of being able and willing to keep someone from taking your stuff. Stuff in this case could be practically anything but having first the determination (not fear) to do what is required to keep yourself and your family secure in times of chaos is perhaps less a skill but it is no less necessary. It is one thing to find a dry space under a cardboard box in the back of an alley but can you defend yourself if needed? Do you have a mindset that is going to position you to see who is approaching and the means to deal with them, possibly violently if the threat calls for it? It is going to be much harder to hide in urban environments. A true SHTF even will make the riots in Baltimore look like a Sunday picnic. Are you ready for that urban survival scenario?

What skills do you think could help someone in an urban setting stay alive if it all went south?

The post Urban Survival Skills That Will Keep You Alive appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/05/01/urban-survival-skills-that-will-keep-you-alive/feed/ 21
Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Prepper Momshttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/30/mothers-day-gift-ideas-for-prepper-moms/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/30/mothers-day-gift-ideas-for-prepper-moms/#comments Thu, 30 Apr 2015 23:40:29 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14220 Written by Elizabeth on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: The following guest article has been generously contributed by Elizabeth.   This is an article for the kids. So I’m not all that big into Mother’s Day. I tell my kids that I’m perfectly o.k. with it if they’re nice to me on any given day of the year, they don’t have to wait […]

The post Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Prepper Moms appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Elizabeth on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: The following guest article has been generously contributed by Elizabeth.


 

This is an article for the kids.

So I’m not all that big into Mother’s Day. I tell my kids that I’m perfectly o.k. with it if they’re nice to me on any given day of the year, they don’t have to wait for one single day in May. I don’t want big gifts, that’s not what I’m about. I would bet most moms would agree: it is especially nice when the kids give something or do something especially thoughtful.

It’s hard to think of what to do or give that shows your mom how much you love and appreciate her so I thought I’d come up with ideas that could be personalized for your own mom. First, think about who she is as a person – is she funny? Sentimental? Imaginative? Practical? Is she easy going or strict? You know your mom, you already know what she’s like, this is just a list of ideas – go ahead, take them and make them your own!

  • Fill an envelope with dandelion seeds that you find in the neighborhood. Decorate it and write a note on it, “Mom, because of you, my roots run deep.” (And kids, did you know that dandelion greens are really good for you and are edible? They make a good salad – just be completely sure if you’re going to eat them that they really are dandelions and are not from a place that has used herbicides or pesticides! )
  • Buy a package of sunflower seeds that grow super huge. Make a card that says, “Mom, your love makes me feel like I could grow THIS BIG!”
  • Go to the dollar store and buy a compass. Make a beautiful card to go with it that says, “Thanks Mom, because of you, I will always know how to find my own True North.”
  • Find an old cattail (I know it’s spring, but they can be found depending on where you are. You may have to get your feet muddy so clean up before you waltz back into the house.). Put a tag on it that says, “Your love feels magical, like when I watch what happens when I wave this in the wind! Go ahead, it’s your turn!”
  • Any little solar powered thing. Add a note that says, “Mom, when I’m feeling low, your love is like the sun, it charges me back up!”
  • A multi-tool – who doesn’t love having an extra multi-tool? Add a card you made that says, “Mom, you make me feel like I could do ANYTHING!”
  • A detailed map of your area. Add a note that says, “Mom, because of you, I always know how to find my way.”
  • Make a special family recipe she’s taught you. Clean the kitchen up all the way after yourself. Tell her that you’re grateful for the things she’s shown you how to do.

And for the kids in my old neighborhood from when you told me you didn’t have art supplies so you couldn’t make art: Exhibit A. You’ll remember the day I declared with all the bravado I could possibly muster as if I were Braveheart or something equally over the top and declared, “Pick a dumpster, any dumpster!” and I dove in to the nastiest one you chose because I JUST HAD TO PROVE IT to you. Yup, it was gross. I can still hear your giggles as I was digging around and tossing useable things back out and losing my balance on smelly, seriously yucky things.

The piece we made together is still holds a prominent place in my home and is the first thing every new guest comments on – and yes, they always ask about the artist -you can bet I tell them it was you :).

So the point is to kids – you don’t need to have anything of your own, use what you have or can find. You CAN make a real work of art that has meaning. I promise you that I know for sure that if it comes from your heart and you really mean it, she will love it, and will keep it forever.


 

More Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Prepper Moms

Elizabeth inspired me to add my own items so at the risk of butting in on her post, I have some more mother’s day gift ideas that might be something that could work for that Prepper Mom in your life.

A good Backpacking  Water Filter

Water as you likely know is probably the most important necessity for survival and having the ability to filter water will give any Mom in your life a tool she can use to provide safe drinking water for her family or herself in a survival situation. For the compact size I like the Sawyer Mini water filter because it is relatively inexpensive, light and portable. Your Mom can use this filter to clean thousands of gallons of water easily and quickly.

A good book on gardening might suite the prepper mom who is looking to start her own journey to self-sufficiency.

A food dehydrator

Don’t hate me for suggesting a kitchen appliance ladies, this was actually my wife’s suggestion and it makes perfect sense. Having your own food dehydrator can be a really simple way to dehydrate and preserve  foods for your pantry. We have a Nesco dehydrator and I made a ton (not literally) of deer jerky this year with it. It sits there and dries away while I am doing other tasks around the house.

A really good flashlight, or two

When you need to have light, your Mom will really appreciate a good flashlight and not the cheap $1 flashlight that won’t last, isn’t very bright and breaks after the first real emergency. Flashlights are something I recommend both for your home survival supplies and your every day carry. You can get Mom, the incredibly bright (and inexpensive) Ultra Fire LED flashlight for her car or purse and something like the Etekcity Ultra Bright Portable Camping LED Lantern for hands free convenience.

A good Gardening book

Has your mom been talking about her survival garden? Well, if she has or even if she hasn’t but you think she might be interested in something like this a good gardening book might be right up her alley. The square foot garden concept is popular for the amount of space needed  and your mom might enjoy the All New Square foot gardening book for her own plot of land gardening plans.

A canning recipe book

It’s hard to go wrong with the Ball Complete book of Home Preserving and canning food is a great long-term food strategy to have if the grid goes down. The ball book has more than 400 recipes that have stood the test of time.

A starter Canning Set

Nothing like mixing up the classics with a good measure of zombie mayhem.

For a nice companion gift you could splurge and get Mom a starter canning kit to put all of those delicious recipes into practice. With the gardening season upon us, now is a great time for both learning how to can and putting up all of that bounty from her garden she will have toiled over for many months. This kit is not a pressure canning set and can only be used for water bath canning, but it is a great way to get your toes wet so to speak in the world of canning food.

Lighthearted Prepper Books worth Reading

Lastly but not least, my wife found two books for the mom who has a good sense of humor. The first is Pride and Prejudice and Zombies that takes this beloved classic and gives it a zombie twist. All of the characters you know and love are still in there and 85 percent of the original text has been preserved but fused with  “ultraviolent zombie mayhem.” according to the review.

Another good option could be the Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook for the adventurous mother who is always eager to learn new things. With sections like How to land a plane or How to jump from a motorcycle to a moving car or How to win a sword-fight, take a punch or deliver a baby in the back of a car –  this book has lots of interesting scenarios that might get your mom thinking. Either that or she might try to get you to punch her in the gut. I wouldn’t recommend doing that.

So there you have lots of mother’s day gift ideas for the Prepper Mom. What ideas do you have?

The post Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Prepper Moms appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/30/mothers-day-gift-ideas-for-prepper-moms/feed/ 0
How Much Cash Should You Have If the Grid Goes Down?http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/28/how-much-cash-should-you-have-if-the-grid-goes-down/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/28/how-much-cash-should-you-have-if-the-grid-goes-down/#comments Tue, 28 Apr 2015 14:12:52 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14192 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

It is the final backup plan for a lot of us in the case of a disaster. A generous supply of cold hard cash to buy our way out of trouble, pick up as many last-minute supplies as possible or to acquire resources that are unavailable to anyone with a credit card in a world […]

The post How Much Cash Should You Have If the Grid Goes Down? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

It is the final backup plan for a lot of us in the case of a disaster. A generous supply of cold hard cash to buy our way out of trouble, pick up as many last-minute supplies as possible or to acquire resources that are unavailable to anyone with a credit card in a world where the electricity is out and the internet is down. We frequently talk about having cash for emergencies, but how much cash should you have if the grid goes down? What will you be able to purchase with your doomsday supply and how long would it last in the first place?

One of our readers made a recommendation the other day to have between $500 and $1000 in cash for your bug out bag and at the time it prompted me to consider again if this amount makes sense. In my personal preparedness plans I have a supply of cash but I am always trying to figure out if what I have is enough or too much. Will it even matter when TEOTWAWKI comes and how can I best use the cash I have to survive?

Why do you need to have cash on hand?

You want to know the time when you will need cash the most? It will be when you can’t get to it. How many of you right now have no cash at all in your wallets or purses? I used to be the same way. I never had cash and relied on the ready availability of cash machines or most often the ability to pay for virtually everything with a debit card. How convenient is it to never have to make change or worry if you have enough cash when with the swipe of a card your bank account funds are at your disposal. This is a great technological advance, but the problem is that this requires two things to be functioning. First, the card readers and ATM machines require electricity. If the electricity is out, neither of these two machines works. The second thing is a network connection. If the network is down, even with electricity the transaction won’t work and you can’t pay for goods or get cash from your bank.

In a disaster, one of the first casualties is electricity. This doesn’t have to be due to some cosmic solar flare that has rendered the grid useless, it could be as destructive and common as a fire, flood, earthquake, tornado or winter storm. It could also be from simple vandalism or perhaps terrorism. A major fiber optic cable was cut in Arizona back in February leaving businesses without the ability to accept payments. When the electricity is out, you aren’t going to be able to access your cash via the normal means so having a supply on hand is going to be a huge advantage for you in the right circumstances.

Even if there is no natural disaster, you are still at the mercy of your bank. What if your bank closes or there is a bank holiday declared because of some economic crisis. In any of these situations, if you are dependent on access to money that is controlled by either technology or physical limitations like a bank office it is wise to have a backup plan should either of those two conditions prevent you from getting cash.

What is cash good for in a crisis?

I think there are two levels to consider when it comes to keeping cash on hand. There is the bug out scenario mentioned above where you would have some “walking around money” to take care of relatively minor needs like food, a hotel or gas. The second is for a longer or more widespread unavailability of funds. Let’s say the economy tanks and the price of everything skyrockets but stores are still open for business. Your bank is one of the casualties, but you had a few thousand dollars of cash stored away that you could use to purchase food, gas and necessary preparedness items for your family. In this scenario, the government is still backing the fiat currency and vendors are still accepting it as a form of payment. For this scenario having a few thousand dollars makes sense.

But what if we have an extreme event where the currency is devalued and is essentially worthless? Your thousands of dollars might only buy you a loaf of bread. Don’t believe it can happen? It did to the Weimar Republic after WWI so it can happen again. That isn’t to say it will, but you should balance how much money you have squirreled away under your mattress with supplies you can purchase now that will last and keep you alive during that same event. My goal is to make sure I have the basics I need to survive at home for several months to a year without needing to spend any cash. This way, if the money is worthless, I still have what my family needs to survive.

If we have a regional disaster where you can bug out to a safer location, your cash should serve you well. Of course if you are in a safer location, assuming electricity was working your access to bank funds should still be working. If this is truly the end of the world as we know it, how long will that cash you have be worth anything?

It is surprisingly simple to disrupt all credit and debit transactions. Do you have cash instead?

It is surprisingly simple to disrupt all credit and debit transactions. Do you have cash instead?

How much cash do you need?

So the million dollar question is how much cash should you have if the grid goes down? I always try to plan for the worst case scenario. My rationale is that if I am prepared for the end of the world as we know it, I should be just as prepared for any lesser disaster or crisis I may be faced with. The way I see it is if we do have a disaster, you aren’t going to be using that cash most likely to pay your mortgage, student loans, rent, or your credit card bills. Cash will go to life saving supplies and this will need to be used in the earliest hours of any crisis before all of the goods are gone or the cash is worthless. Once people realize for example that the government has been temporarily destroyed, they aren’t going to want to take your $500 for a tank of gas. They are going to want guns, food or bullets.

Hiding cash is easy, just don’t forget where you put it.

I also don’t see you using your cash to buy passage to another country, but that’s just me. I know there is a historical precedent for that, but I am not planning on that being something I realistically attempt with my family. I am also not planning on bribing any officials with cash either. My cash is for last-minute necessities and then it is back into the hopefully safe confines of my home to plan the next steps. For that I have only a couple of thousand dollars in cash stored away. I figure if I need more than that I didn’t plan well. Also, I would rather spend my money on supplies like long-term storable food and equipment than having a large horde of cash. With that amount, I figure I can make one last run if needed or be able to weather any short-term emergency when I can’t access cash.

What is the best place to hide cash in your home?

I wrote a post awhile back titled, How to hide your money where the bankers won’t find it that had lots of good ideas for reasonably safe places you could store cash. As I said in that article, you do have risks involved with keeping cash in your house, but I think you have just the same, if not worse risks relying on banks to keep your money safe and give it back when you want it. There are a million places to hide cash, but you can get tricky and buy a fake shaving cream safe to store several hundred dollars in there. Just be careful you don’t throw that away. There are other options like wall clocks with a hidden compartment inside that might be less prone to getting tossed in the trash. Your imagination is really all that is needed for a good hiding place, but I would caution you that you don’t store cash in too many places or you could forget where you hid it. This happened to me when I had hidden some cash behind an item that I ended up giving to my daughter because I thought I didn’t need it anymore. Imagine my surprise when she came into the living room and said, “Dad, I found an envelope with a lot of money in it”. I gave her a twenty for a reward…

What about you? How much cash do you think you need to have on hand and what do you plan on spending it on if the grid goes down?

The post How Much Cash Should You Have If the Grid Goes Down? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/28/how-much-cash-should-you-have-if-the-grid-goes-down/feed/ 51
Smart and Effective Ways to Teach Children about Preparedness and Survivalhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/27/smart-and-effective-ways-to-teach-children-about-preparedness-and-survival/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/27/smart-and-effective-ways-to-teach-children-about-preparedness-and-survival/#comments Mon, 27 Apr 2015 13:30:52 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14176 Written by Julie Ellis on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This post was generously contributed by Julie Ellis. Teaching children to care about and understand the need for disaster preparedness and the development of survival skills is a complex task. First, one must maintain an understanding of the emotional maturity, attention span, and worldly understanding of the child with whom they are dealing. […]

The post Smart and Effective Ways to Teach Children about Preparedness and Survival appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Julie Ellis on The Prepper Journal.

Editor’s Note: This post was generously contributed by Julie Ellis.


Teaching children to care about and understand the need for disaster preparedness and the development of survival skills is a complex task. First, one must maintain an understanding of the emotional maturity, attention span, and worldly understanding of the child with whom they are dealing. Then, they must tailor their instruction and expectations to that. In addition to this, it is important to engage a child on these topics in a way that they enjoy and that is interesting to them. Here are ten suggestions that might be helpful to parents or other adults who are attempting to tackle the job of introducing kids to the concepts and skills of preparedness and survival.

Incorporate Lessons into Daily Life.

It does not matter what the topic is, children learn skills and concepts best, when two things happen. The first is that they are allowed to learn and incorporate skills gradually. The second is that they see an immediate practical usefulness for these skills. The best way to accomplish this is to avoid introducing kids to huge concepts about preparedness, but to instead teach them small yet useful skills that you can build on later. This could be as simple as teaching a child how to sort food scraps for composting, or giving them the job of checking the deep freeze and pantry on a daily basis in order to determine which items need to be restocked.

Make the Child Understand that He or She Has an Important Role to Play

It is your job to introduce kids to the concepts and skills of preparedness and survival.

Nothing is less motivating to a child than giving him or her meaningless busy work. It can be tempting to give a child busy work to keep him/her out of the adults’ hair, but the long-term results of doing this are never positive. Even the least savvy child will eventually figure things out. Teaching a child new skills is a messy process that is never easy. Parents need to understand that children are going to make mistakes and that they are going to have to help clean up the resulting messes. That shouldn’t stop parents from giving important jobs to children. In fact, kids need to understand that they play an important part in things, and that the tasks they perform are meaningful. So, if you are engaged in some prepping project, make sure your child feels that s/he is truly contributing.

Make Sure that Kids See the Fruits of Their Labor

Food production and storage is a key component of successful preparedness. Many parents make the mistake of giving their children individual jobs to do when it comes to these tasks, but they fail to make sure the children have an understanding of the entire process. For example, it only takes a few moments to show a child a jar of canned tomatoes in the pantry, and then explain to that child how that jar of tomatoes came from a plant he helped put into the ground a year ago. From there, the parent can explain to the child that their jar of tomatoes along with all of the other jars of canned goods will help feed the family for a few long time. They can also explain that even if a disaster were to make getting to the store impossible, the family could stay healthy eating the food that they have stored.

Age appropriate skills are important for all children.

Let your child know they have an important role to play.

Encourage Older Kids to Teach and Mentor Younger Kids

One great way to reinforce a skill is to have a child teach that skill to somebody else. When children demonstrate and explain a survival skill to a younger friend or sibling, they gain self-confidence and a new understanding of what they are doing and why they are doing it. If the child who is doing the teaching needs to work on a skill repetitively, teaching that skill to others gives him/her the opportunity to repeat the work themselves without it feeling like drudgery or punishment. Of course, the younger children also benefit. They get attention from an older friend or sibling that kids often crave, and they probably have more fun than they would if they were learning from boring old mom and dad.

Go Camping!

Roughing it is a great way to teach kids outdoorsman ship skills that they may need to use in emergency situations down the road. Make it fun! Create a check list of skills each kid should learn and demonstrate, and then offer a reward and lots of praise when they succeed. After the child has met his or her goals, mom or dad can opt to tell them how the skills they have learned might be valuable in a situation where disaster or other tragedy has struck.

TeachingChildrenHunting

There are so many skills you can teach your children that could be useful in an emergency.

Take the Children Grocery Shopping

The family’s weekly, bi-weekly or monthly trip to the grocery store is a great opportunity to educate children about purchasing, storing, and rotating paper goods, dry goods, food, and other supplies. During these trips, parents can introduce their children to the butcher, military surplus store owner, and other members of the community that they can utilize when they eventually want to stock up their own reserves. When they are finished helping with the shopping, children can be taught how to sort the groceries into items that are to be used immediately, items to be saved for use in a few months, and items that are stockpiled in the event of a true emergency.

Make it Age Appropriate

There are many reasons that family make survival learning and preparedness a priority. Some of these reasons can be hard to understand for younger children. They can also be frightening. Parents should use their best judgment when determining what children should be exposed to. It may help to remember that many of the skills that are needed for children to become survivalists can be taught in ways that are enjoyable and that don’t cause children undo alarm. Parents can wait to tell their children the reasons why they are learning these skills until they are older and better prepared.

At the end of the day, there are no magic formulas for preparing kids for the future or for unknown crises or disaster. It just takes common sense, patience, and mentoring.

About the author: Julie Ellis is working as the writer for http://www.premieressay.net/, finds her inspiration in the educational assistance to gifted students. A Master’s degree in Journalism allows her to follow her vocation and help English-speaking students around the world.

You can find her on Twitter – @premieressaynet.

The post Smart and Effective Ways to Teach Children about Preparedness and Survival appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/27/smart-and-effective-ways-to-teach-children-about-preparedness-and-survival/feed/ 7
Defeating Looters: Podcast Interview on Modern Combat & Survivalhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/25/defeating-looters-podcast-interview-on-modern-combat-survival/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/25/defeating-looters-podcast-interview-on-modern-combat-survival/#comments Sat, 25 Apr 2015 10:00:26 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14149 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

I was honored to be invited to share my thoughts with Jeff Anderson of Modern Combat and Survival on his podcast this week to discuss a topic that is near and dear to many preppers out there. When it all starts to go sideways and the worst comes out in people…What are the best strategies […]

The post Defeating Looters: Podcast Interview on Modern Combat & Survival appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

I was honored to be invited to share my thoughts with Jeff Anderson of Modern Combat and Survival on his podcast this week to discuss a topic that is near and dear to many preppers out there. When it all starts to go sideways and the worst comes out in people…What are the best strategies for defeating looters when SHTF?

Jeff always has interesting guests on his weekly podcasts and I hope I was able to contribute to the larger conversation in some small way. To hear our interview that really spanned a lot of areas, please visit the Modern Combat and Survival page and check it out.

To get an idea of what we discussed, you can view the bullet points below. We have discussed some of these topics on the Prepper Journal before, but the interview on MCS covered new areas for me.

  • How to avoid the biggest mistakes nearly every homeowner makes when protecting against looters (and how to think like a “military officer” planning for battle)!
  • How to make your home less of a target for the bands of roaming anarchists seeking out their next victim household!
  • The secret to establishing an “early detection system” that alerts you to the presence of dangerous gangs in your area after a disaster.
  • Why you must plan for “fortress fortification” NOW… and the right way to stop invading forces in their tracks!
  • “Last stand” tactics: When danger has reached your door, here’s how to unleash Holy Hell on your attackers!

Hope you enjoy!

The post Defeating Looters: Podcast Interview on Modern Combat & Survival appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/25/defeating-looters-podcast-interview-on-modern-combat-survival/feed/ 4
Emergency Kit Necessities: Surviving a Disaster in the Cityhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/24/emergency-kit-necessities-surviving-a-disaster-in-the-city/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/24/emergency-kit-necessities-surviving-a-disaster-in-the-city/#comments Fri, 24 Apr 2015 10:00:38 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14137 Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Imagine a post-apocalyptic scenario in which you have access to all of the resources you could possibly need, but there are hundreds of thousands of other civilians battling for the same supplies; when the scenario is life or death, the potential havoc wreaked by the people could be as dangerous as the disaster itself and […]

The post Emergency Kit Necessities: Surviving a Disaster in the City appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Imagine a post-apocalyptic scenario in which you have access to all of the resources you could possibly need, but there are hundreds of thousands of other civilians battling for the same supplies; when the scenario is life or death, the potential havoc wreaked by the people could be as dangerous as the disaster itself and you could be killed for trying to reach the necessary resources to survive. This is just another reason why you need to be prepared now. The supplies will vary, but here is a basic guide to building a city-side emergency kit.

The basics:

If your plan is to stay in your house and use it a base, you need basic items to ensure that you can hold your ground in relative comfort for x amount of time. The FEMA.gov emergency supply list suggests one gallon of water per person per day, on average about a two-week supply for a home stay; non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food is required and don’t forget the manual can opener. Additionally, diapers and formula for infants, extra water and food for any pets, and important documents or records.

The American Red Cross urges anyone organizing an emergency plan to include prescription medications in excess if possible. Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items need to be included as well.

Gear for the group:

Suggestions from the American Red Cross: a whistle for commanding attention in chaotic emergency or threatening situations; N95 or surgical masks could be lifesavers in the event of airborne toxins; two-way radios, and spare batteries; flashlights and maps of the area will help you plan scavenging expeditions and quick getaways. You’ll also need tools and materials for securing your house, including work gloves, plastic sheeting, scissors, duct tape, extra sheets, blankets and towels.

A good bug out bag is another option for urban survival. If you have to leave in a hurry you will appreciate a rugged pack to carry your supplies.

Regular items already around the house should be in working condition and of ample supply. Household bleach is a must in your home survival arsenal, along with a medicine dropper—a combination of nine parts water and one part bleach will yield a DIY water disinfectant. Stay away from the color safe or scented bleaches, though, as they have a less agreeable chemical composition. Make sure you have matches secured in a waterproof container and a fire extinguisher.

Personal necessities:

One of the often overlooked aspects of every survival kit is being able to see clearly. Those with 20/20 vision are at an extreme advantage here, but half of all Americans have poor eyesight, so it’s important to take proper care of your eyes especially in a disaster scenario, when you need to be at your best. If you depend on glasses or contact lenses to see, stock up on extras and backups as much as possible; however, glasses and contacts are pricey, so buy in bulk from a discount resource like Vision Direct.

Possibly one of the most useful items in the kit will be your survival knife. The recommended blade size for a multipurpose knife is between six and 12 inches, and the recommended thickness of the blade is 3/16 of an inch to 4/16. Your survival knife should be handy and able to serve many purposes, but you do not want the blade to have a lot of flex to it.

Sure, it is impossible to prepare for every single disaster situation possible, and being stuck in a cityscape may not be you’re ideal survival scenario, but there are a few advantages to it. You can keep more supplies! And the right supplies can make all the difference.

While you’re prepping, read and learn as much as you can before you’re faced with the circumstance. To err on the side of caution, include concise directions for emergency reference materials that cover topics like how to administer first aid could mean the difference between life and death.

The post Emergency Kit Necessities: Surviving a Disaster in the City appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/24/emergency-kit-necessities-surviving-a-disaster-in-the-city/feed/ 14
Skills Might Not Always be Better than Stuffhttp://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/23/skills-might-not-always-be-better-than-stuff/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/23/skills-might-not-always-be-better-than-stuff/#comments Thu, 23 Apr 2015 14:13:10 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14128 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

In the Prepping community there are some topics that draw familiar responses from people of all walks of life. Naturally I am guilty of throwing out my own clichéd responses to these core concepts from time to time – hopefully with enough of my own opinion in there, also hopefully unique enough to warrant someone […]

The post Skills Might Not Always be Better than Stuff appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

In the Prepping community there are some topics that draw familiar responses from people of all walks of life. Naturally I am guilty of throwing out my own clichéd responses to these core concepts from time to time – hopefully with enough of my own opinion in there, also hopefully unique enough to warrant someone spending five minutes to read or share what I have written. This either draws a lot of comments or none. You can tell how controversial your post is by looking at the comments section and we have some great readers who are very experienced and just as opinionated if not more than I am. When an issue is drawing a lot of comments there is a great debate going on that is usually pretty civil and always interesting.

One of the debate threads or concepts that I frequently see has to do with this prepper mantra that Skills are better than stuff. For those who haven’t heard of that phrase before, it is simply the idea that you can have all of the supplies in the world but if you lack the knowledge of either A) how to use those supplies or B) alternative ways of accomplishing the same thing without those supplies, you are in a worse position.

On the surface this makes perfect sense. Let’s take a firearm for example. You can spend $1200 on the best AR-15 in the world, tricked out with the best weapon light, laser guided night sights, the best AR-15 scope, complete with the best camo paintjob. In the end, that AR-15 might be the most awesome weapon in the world and end up costing you more than most of our first cars. That Rifle represents “Stuff”.  But, if you don’t know how to hit the broad side of a barn with that expensive piece of metal and plastic, are you better off? If you can’t effectively clear a jam, reload under high-stress environments and accurately engage targets out to at least 100 yards (Skills), what good is it? What good are you?

Skills are an important part of being prepared for any situation.

In the example above, you would be much better off with a relatively cheap, hand me down .22 rifle and the skills to shoot a target and hit it accurately in a variety of situations. The prepper who can do that will spend less and be better off relatively than the prepper who spent thousands in this case. Additionally, if you can effectively shoot that .22 you would probably be able to use any weapon to a better degree than the prepper who simply bought their way to the highest levels of tactical nirvana.

Are Skills better than Stuff

In many cases it is clear to see how having skill is a particular area is highly advantageous over simply having the means to buy stuff. We use this argument all of the time to temper the thoughts of some preppers that feel compelled to wear out their credit card to get the latest prepper gear and supplies and go from zero to prepped in a single Amazon.com transaction. Skills are better than stuff in many cases, but is that a universal truth like some preppers seem to rely on when admonishing their fellow preppers?

Before I get into that side of the argument let’s take a look at a few skills that I believe we can universally agree are wise for any prepper to have in a TEOTWAWKI scenario. Todd Walker over at Survival Sherpa exemplifies the best part of the Skills mindset for me and his articles are full of amazingly creative and practical tips for making do without many of the conveniences we rely on. Our “Stuff”.

The bottom line is that if we did go through TEOTWAWKI, I would want a guy like Todd on my side. He has great articles that speak directly to skills such as:

Daisy Luther is another blogger you likely already know over at her site, The Organic Prepper and she also has great skills based articles like:

And there are hundreds more skills based articles out there in the world of Prepper Websites. You can find other great sources for information on our Prepper Resources page. There are millions of them. How to make a fire, how to forage for wild berries and how to tan hides, build shelter or create your own water filtration system to homeopathic medicine. Skills are important and some skills can’t be easily replaced, but I maintain that some “Stuff” isn’t easily replaced by skills either, so we should find a balance.

Living with nothing more than the essentials for survival is tough. Not impossible, but tough. It is called Survival for a reason.

Living with nothing more than the essentials for survival is tough.

When Stuff is better than skills

If you strip any “Survival Expert” naked and throw them into the woods on their own – I imagine most will be able to “Survive” but unless you are planning on being naked in the woods, why wouldn’t you try to increase your advantages in any place you can?

Canning is a skill that is handy even now when the grid is still up.

Going back to my earlier example with firearms. The Skills purist might say that you don’t need a modern firearm if you have the skills to build a bow. You don’t need to stock up ammo if you can make arrows, a spear or a flint knife. I will concede that knowing how to do that is valuable, but limited knowledge in a lot of scenarios. The average person isn’t Robin Hood so the idea that you will easily defend your family from marauders with guns while you are hiding in your debris shelter doesn’t seem realistic to me. Could it be done by some? Sure, I guess but we are talking about millions of people who read Prepping blogs like the Prepper Journal. Do you think we should all take a wilderness survival course and not put away any provisions?

“Your supplies will run out”! and I completely understand that argument too. Even if you have stored years’ worth of Freeze-Dried foods in your underground bunker, eventually it will run out. Wouldn’t the person who can forage for wild food, trap animals with snares and “live off the land” be better suited for a TEOTWAWKI world? It sounds compelling, but I don’t necessarily agree completely with that line of thinking in all cases.

I know food, ammo, batteries etc. are finite and they will run out, but living off the land is hard, prone to injury and leaves you exposed to more (elements, people, fallout?) bad things than the person who is trying to hunker down and live off their supplies for as long as possible. You may survive off the land if you walk out there in good weather, with nothing but your 10 C’s for survival,  in good health – provided there aren’t millions of others trying to do the same thing. Surviving isn’t the same as thriving. I know we humans have been on this planet for a long time, most of that time has been without any of the stuff we rely on now. However, we didn’t live as long, had much harder lives and there weren’t as many people on our big blue dot as there are now.

Skills also can’t replace communication like radios, at least not in anywhere near the same effectiveness. Sure you can learn how to train carrier pigeons, but C’mon! Who is going to do that? Skills are also not going to help you whittle a power supply out of a piece of Hickory so wouldn’t Solar panels be a good use of Stuff in a survival situation? What about light? Sure you can make a fire with your bow saw and create a nice torch with pine resin but is that better than a tactical flashlight with rechargeable batteries and a solar charger?

Just my thoughts and I am always curious to hear yours. I believe there is a balance to be found between skills and stuff. I think you need to have both in good measure. What do you think?

The post Skills Might Not Always be Better than Stuff appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/23/skills-might-not-always-be-better-than-stuff/feed/ 24
Is the U.S. Government Building the Terrorists they Need?http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/21/is-the-u-s-government-building-the-terrorists-they-need/ http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/21/is-the-u-s-government-building-the-terrorists-they-need/#comments Tue, 21 Apr 2015 22:00:39 +0000 http://www.theprepperjournal.com/?p=14099 Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

For a long time; I along with countless others who are better informed than me have wondered at the strange nature of our governments actions upon the citizens they are supposed to represent and protect. If one didn’t know any better, it would seem that rather than being constituted to fight for the rights of […]

The post Is the U.S. Government Building the Terrorists they Need? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
Written by Pat Henry on The Prepper Journal.

For a long time; I along with countless others who are better informed than me have wondered at the strange nature of our governments actions upon the citizens they are supposed to represent and protect. If one didn’t know any better, it would seem that rather than being constituted to fight for the rights of their fellow countrymen, there has been an increasing shift at all levels of government that puts the needs, concerns and priorities of it citizens beneath government’s own –  almost to the point of outright animosity. Rather than providing for “the common defense”, it increasingly feels to me like our government at all levels views us citizens as their enemy.

If this is true in any measure, why would that be the case? What purpose would driving public opinion down and fostering anger serve a government that ostensibly is only in power or control at the will of the people? There are a million theories I have heard espoused in prepper blogs and on the comments of survival forums, but the only thing that makes sense to me is that this is not accidental. This is not just the offshoots of our decaying culture where respect is a victim thrown in the gutter long ago. This is not a generational shift that speaks to our increasing lack of values. I believe the rising conflict and confrontation is all being done with a specific goal in mind. The goal of government agency abuses and apparent lack of remorse or responsibility to their citizens is to drive an agenda that foresees a world much differently than what we have now. I believe that on some level, our government is willingly complicit. Could it be that it is the people we elected, who say they are protecting us are, who we actually have most to fear from? Is our government building the terrorists they need in order to enact the changes they want in our country.

You have to have a bad guy

Many of you will read that paragraph above and naturally go with the conspiracy theory angle. I understand how simple that conclusion would be, but I don’t have grand answers, blueprints or reasons. I only have observations that I will list below. I don’t know the specifics, but I do think I have a lot of anecdotal evidence that when viewed together paints a picture. Answering the question of who painted that picture or why they painted it in the first place isn’t the purpose of this article, but I do hope to outline a trend. For many of you this is nothing new, but for some I hope that I can phrase this argument in a way that will at a minimum make you consider the changes our country has undergone and to question if possibly there isn’t something more worth investigating.

We have to have a bad guy to hate, to relinquish our freedoms to and fear for our lives.

We have to have a bad guy to hate, to relinquish our freedoms to and fear for our lives.

Everyone who has ever seen a movie or read a book knows that you must have a bad guy. There has to be some conflict that your hero can rise above. This bad guy can come from anywhere, have any motivation and they simply just need to be the person your hero struggles against. In this struggle, if the author has done a good job of developing the story and making your hero loveable, you will cheer on the hero and start to hate the bad guy. Maybe hate is too strong in all cases, but you have a clear allegiance to the hero and willingly believe all manner of situations as long as those eventually put your hero in the winning spot.

I maintain that national politics behave in a similar fashion, at least in our country even if I am making this overly simplistic. Our government is the hero to our country, national pride is easy to come by and chants of “USA, USA” are almost comical now. But like any good story, our hero needs a bad guy to fight against in order for this to work. This bad guy has taken on many forms in the past. The Indians, British, The Southern States, Germany, Japan and Russia, Cuba, Drugs, Russia again, Poverty, Iran, Iraq, Sugar, Al Qaeda, ISIS and more recently returning veterans and gun owners. At various times we have always had someone we needed to fight but have you ever questioned why that is?

It seems logical in war-time situations that when an aggressor comes to your land they must be fought off. This has morphed via treaties into extending our military to protect the interests of our friends and some would say our own national interests in the form of natural resources. I can understand almost all of those situations even when I don’t agree with them.

A terrifying portrait of a nation at war with itself and which is on the verge of undermining the basic freedoms guaranteed to the citizenry in the Constitution.


What I can never understand, absent some ulterior motive, and this is the thought that prompted me to write this article, is when the enemy becomes the citizens of our country. Don’t you have to wonder what the goal is when our government with its national security apparatus and all of the other forces a nation of our size can mobilize, is identifying its own citizens as targets for scrutiny? The following are just a few examples of this trend.

Labeling returning veterans as domestic terrorists – In 2009 a report from DHS was leaked via the Washington times, which you can read here naming returning veterans, gun owners and people who are opposed to abortion or illegal immigration as right-wing extremists – essentially equating them with terrorists. Police and government agencies are now often war gaming scenarios where the disturbance is caused by “sovereign citizens” or people opposed to the government and to make things interesting, gun confiscations are practiced.

Military exercises in Civilian areas – Operation Jade Helm is a multi-state training exercise that has a lot of implications that can be viewed as being war-gamed for potential use in the U.S. 1200 military special operations forces will be working to operate undetected among civilian populations. There are some reports that these exercises are preparations for martial law, which isn’t completely ridiculous when you consider that Texas and Utah, both large populations of gun owners and veterans are listed as “Hostile” in the exercise materials.

Denying Veterans medical treatment – What better way to both ensure that your veterans are simultaneously angry and less able to resist you than by denying their prompt medical treatment after they return wounded from serving the same country who now labels them as a potential threat.

Stifling of protests and dissent – Our Constitution guarantees our freedom of speech and the right to lawfully assemble, but these rights are increasingly under attack and marginalized. From high-profile cases like the Bundy ranch standoff where a cordoned area was set aside for protests (free speech as long as you do it where we say) to the FCC controlling the internet. Our freedoms are being taken away and you must ask why.

Ignoring the wishes of voters – This is probably the most in your face example of how our government is directly working in ways contradictory to our wishes and it begs the question why anyone would do something so seemingly counter intuitive to a politician’s survival instincts. From Immigration Amnesty that is overwhelmingly opposed by Americans to NSA spying and legislation that increases debts to continuing risky practices that got us into massive debt in the first place. Our government has shown repeatedly that they do not care what you want. The only logical conclusion is they do not care if you are happy with what they are doing – they want you angry.

Propaganda: information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.

Propaganda: information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.

Staging or Facilitating acts of terror – Terrorism is the great big boogie man, but is it really terrorism if your own government is creating the terror? A 214 page report called Illusion of Justice: Human Rights Abuses in US Terrorism Prosecutions found that many of the most recent “terror” attacks would not have even been possible if it weren’t for direct FBI involvement. In many cases, FBI agents provided explosives and guided patsy’s to actions they could not and possibly would not have committed themselves without provocation. The thrown away part of all of these stories is that the FBI foiled the attempt… that they created in the first place. Why is our government creating terrorists or putting explosives (designed not to work naturally) in the hands of lunatics? Is it to scare us or to keep the fear of terrorism fresh in our minds with the hopes that we ignore the whole FBI sponsored angle of these events?

Arming and Supporting the forces who want our destruction – First we were told Al Qaeda was the bad guy, then we sent arms and money to “moderate” Al Qaeda terrorists in Syria to overthrow the government of Assad. Does anyone else see a problem with this? Why are we supposed to believe that the evil Al Qaeda is now our friend? Even if this is a necessary evil as some would say; it’s still evil.

Massive Purchases of Ammunition – Do you want to create a frenzy and start rumors that you are going to war against the public? Buy 1.6 Billion rounds of hollow point ammo. If that isn’t enough buy targets showing pregnant women, children and old men. That will surely get people riled up for no logical reason.

Promoting Police Abuses – There has been a ton of news recently about police officer abuses. I don’t condone any abuse by police officers and believe it must be stopped, but if you step back and ask yourself why this is all coming out now a different picture emerges. I don’t believe that the issue is completely related to something as simple as there being more abuse caught on camera. I think this is promoted and stirred up in combination with racial overtones in order to pave the way for a Federal (Military) police force. George Soros gave millions to support the protests in Ferguson so this exposure and outrage isn’t genuinely organic. If not that, then at least showing a scene of police violence every night in the news will get the public agitated, make them less trustful of police and in the long run ensure a confrontation at some point.

What’s the Point?

The point I have arrived at personally is that each of these various items are happening in tandem with a pronounced increase in the perceived hostility of our government towards the citizens. I for one think it is being done intentionally. Our hero needs a new bad guy and that bad guy apparently is you and me fellow citizens. We are being pushed and prodded with civil actions, economic actions and policy with the hopes that we get upset and that simmering anger will eventually need to be dealt with on the government’s terms. Our government is preparing for us by military civil disturbance training and creating laws that deal with suspending all rights in the course of public emergencies so is this so far out of the realm of possibility?

Outside of us all sitting down and having a Kumbaya moment, I don’t know what we can do. I think that if we do nothing the freedoms we used to have will be taken away eventually. If we resist they are going to be taken away violently. We are on a trajectory in this country that ends in violence I fear and that is one aspect that drives my prepping plans.

I want to view the world from the political as well as the natural disaster side so I am not blindsided by events with my local, state or national representatives. I don’t think I am going to stand up to a military force by myself but I also don’t believe I am powerless. I personally believe we all need to watch closely for the safety of our families and to be able to act as quickly as possible. Just like natural disasters, there have always been government disasters. Governments that started as a vision of Freedom, equality, justice and prosperity that grew tyrannical, genocidal and evil. There is nothing in our Constitution that seems to be preventing that from happening again.

The post Is the U.S. Government Building the Terrorists they Need? appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

]]>
http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2015/04/21/is-the-u-s-government-building-the-terrorists-they-need/feed/ 96